Skip to comments.Miami Hurricanes Football Star Shot To Death
Posted on 11/07/2006 9:16:08 PM PST by My Favorite Headache
Miami Defensive End Shot to Death Pata Shot After Leaving Practice Field By TIM REYNOLDS AP Sports University of Miami defensive lineman Bryan Pata was shot and killed Tuesday night, shortly after leaving the practice field, school officials said.
Miami Player Shot and Killed
AP Miami's Bryan Pata was shot and killed shortly after practice Tuesday night.
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The shooting occurred at the apartment complex where Pata lived, about 4 miles from campus. His death was ruled a homicide, Miami-Dade police spokesman Roy Rutland said.
"Right now, we're just gathering ourselves and just trying to pull ourselves together," Miami athletic director Paul Dee said.
Rutland said police were called at 7:30 p.m. to the scene and found Pata's body in the parking lot. The 22-year-old senior who grew up in Miami was pronounced dead at the scene.
The circumstances around Pata's death were not immediately clear, and Miami-Dade police did not say who made the 911 call after the shooting.
The 6-foot-4, 280-pound lineman was in his fourth year with the Hurricanes. He appeared in 41 games, making 23 starts, and was expected to be selected in next spring's NFL draft.
Word spread quickly around campus, and grief counselors were quickly summoned to work with Pata's teammates.
Most Popular Sports Stories Seahawks Rack Up Nine Sacks in WinFlorida Receiver Stabbed in FightWhere, Oh Where Will Bonds Land?Tiger Announces Plan to Build CoursesDefend Champ Picked Preseason No. 1Annette Ponnock, Miami's student body president, said Pata - a fierce player on the field and a somewhat soft-spoken one off it - was well known and popular on campus.
"Everyone is just more surprised than anything else," Ponnock said. "He's such a personality on campus. It was just really, really shocking to have such a loss. ... He was a big guy so it was kind of hard to miss him. He just had a presence about him."
The Hurricanes used Pata primarily at defensive tackle this season, and he had 13 tackles and two sacks.
Miami is supposed to play at No. 23 Maryland Saturday. There has not been any announcement about whether that game will happen as scheduled.
Atlantic Coast Conference commissioner John Swofford was aware of the shooting and was working with Miami officials to gather information, conference spokeswoman Amy Yakola said.
It was at least the fourth time that tragedy involving a player has struck the Hurricanes in recent years.
In April 1996, reserve linebacker and Miami native Marlin Barnes was murdered in a campus apartment. And in 2003, former Miami safety Al Blades was killed in a car accident, about a year after former Miami linebacker Chris Campbell - who had just completed his eligibility with the Hurricanes - also died in a crash.
Pata's death was the second incident involving guns this season for the Hurricanes.
In July, reserve safety Willie Cooper was shot in the buttocks when confronted in his yard before an early morning workout. Cooper was not seriously injured. Brandon Meriweather, one of Cooper's teammates and roommates, returned fire at Cooper's assailant, taking three shots that apparently missed, police said.
Several Miami players, including Pata, said that incident was a robbery attempt, and cautioned other teammates to always be aware of their surroundings.
"We're targets because we play for the University of Miami.
These guys, they know who we are," Miami linebacker Jon Beason said shortly after the Cooper shooting.
That incident prompted Miami coach Larry Coker to say that he did not want his players to have guns, even if they possessed them legally.
Coker the liberal.
The area around campus is a crime infested area. No surprise a violent incident happened.
They should just shut down the program for good. I bet most players on the team can't even spell their own names.
Then how do they sign the back of their checks?
Maybe they get direct deposit. Boosters are clever these days.
What a racket...
checks leave a paper trail back to the athletic department and boosters.
Envelopes of cash and gold chains don't.
Shame on some of you.
The area around campus happens to be coral gables...populated by wealthy people. Hardly a bad neighborhood.
The U of Miami also happens to have a high graduation rate. (Top 5 in the nation)
Again..Shame on some of you. This is a tragedy.
It isn't all that far to the bad sections.
It's still all CORAL GABLES around campus...if you think that 2 million dollar homes constitutes a bad neighborhood..then I guess I concede this point of debate.
Homicide is the act of killing a human being.
Determining that the decedent was shot to death by someone else - Relatively easy.
Determining that the deceased was a human - Also relatively easy.
I'd like to think that the reporter was the one who used such a useless phrase, not the PD's spokesman. /rant
Stupid reporting is one of my pet peeves, and could lead to lines reading, "His CAT was ruled a FELINE." /o.k. the rant is really over this time
I have been there plenty of times. There are shotgun shacks that abut the campus. All around Coconut Grove are some seriously nasty slums.
Well, the rats gaining the congress is ALOT worse news if you ask me.
Tomorrow I may feel a little more sympathetic.
Probably a drug deal gone bad. 10 to 1....
I'm sure it *was* the PD's spokesperson who said it (since that's who they quoted).
Until there are autopsy results and an investigation, the ME will issue a preliminary ruling that the death is either (1) a homicide; (2) a suicide; (3) from natural causes; or (4) of unknown or undetermined cause.
Not until the follow-up will those generic labels be fleshed out in more detail and sometimes changed.
You haven't been there. Shotgun shacks? Are you serious?
That would be tennis.