Florida International footballer Luke Knox has died at the age of 22, the school announced on Thursday.
A native of Brentwood, Tennessee, and the younger brother of Buffalo Bills tight end Dawson Knox, Knox spent the past four seasons at Ole Miss before transferring to FIU.
Knox, who studied business administration, died Wednesday night, school officials said. The cause was not disclosed, although the university said police do not suspect malicious intent.
“Words cannot express the deep sadness we feel at the passing of our teammate and friend, Luke Knox,” FIU coach Mike MacIntyre said in a statement. “I had the honor of coaching Luke at Ole Miss and FIU. While I admired his passion for football, I will always remember his genuine love for his family and teammates. He had a special way of making everyone around him feel at ease. comfortable and confident.”
Knox started two games at linebacker for Ole Miss in 2019, when MacIntyre served as the defensive coordinator. He has played mostly special teams for the past two seasons and had 11 tackles, two for loss, in 2021.
“We send our thoughts and prayers to Luke’s family, friends and teammates at this difficult time,” FIU Athletics said in a statement. “Coaches and support staff have reached out to our football family and will continue to do so to ensure our student athletes receive the support they need.”
FIU players were notified of Knox’s death late on Wednesday. Thursday’s training was canceled and grief counselors were called in to meet the team and others from the university community.
Bills coach Sean McDermott said he woke up Thursday morning to the news and emphasized that the franchise will support Dawson Knox and his family.
“My heart goes out to — our hearts go out to Dawson and his family during this time,” McDermott said. “We are with him supporting him and his family and just tragic news that woke me up this morning. So we love him, and we support him and just unfortunate news this morning.”
ESPN’s Alaina Getzenberg and The Associated Press contributed to this report.