On Saturday, Florida Gator’s forward Keyonte Johnson collapsed during the first half of their game against Florida State. Before the incident, the Junior basketball star cinched an alley-oop, helping advance the Gators 11-3 advantage over the state rival. He was celebrating with his teammates and began walking towards the sideline before he collapsed. Moments later, emergency officials removed Johnson from the court via stretcher.
Immediately following the incident, a medical team transported Johnson to Tallahassee Memorial Hospital. According to Florida officials, it’s still not clear what caused Johnson to collapse. Even though the game continued after he left, his teammates were visibly emotional, huddling together while crying. Gator’s coach Mike White put his arms around the team before the game continued.
Keyonte Johnson’s Path to the NBA
His leadership on the court and his adaptability under high-stress moments make the Virginia native a force to be reckoned with. The SEC named Johnson as Preseason Player of the Year after deciding to put his NBA career on hold for another season at Florida State.
During his sophomore year, he averaged 14 points and 7.1 rebounds per game. Before the incident, the 6’5″, 229-pound Junior had all the makings of an incredible athlete.
The team was 19-12 with an 11-7 conference record before the season shut down due to the coronavirus pandemic. On Saturday, the Gators entered the game with their rival Seminoles with a perfect 3-0 record for the season. Johnson’s talent was a driving force for the team’s success.
In addition to the rebounds and PPG, Johnson was averaging 19.7 points, 6.0 rebounds, 1.7 assists, and 1.3 steals in the three games leading up to Saturday’s contest.
On Twitter, fans were quick to give their support to Johnson. FSU Seminoles also tweeted their support of the 21-year-old, writing, “Our thoughts and prayers with Keyontae Johnson and @GatorsMBK.”
As of now, Johnson is in critical but stable condition.