College Sports

Benedict coach hospitalized

Stanley Conner
Stanley Conner

Benedict football coach Stanley Conner remained hospitalized Sunday after suffering an apparent heart attack during Saturday’s game in Columbia against Kentucky State, a school spokesman said.

Conner, who began feeling ill just before half-time, was taken to the Tigers’ lockeroom, then rushed to Providence Hospital, said Benedict sports information director Derrick Johnson. Johnson had few details on Conner’s condition Sunday morning, but said the coach was in obvious pain Saturday.

"About 30 seconds before half time, I noticed him kneeling down,’’ Johnson said. "Then the trainers came over. At first, they thought it was dehydration or something like that. Then, when he was in the locker room, he started having pains in the chest.’’

Players didn’t know immediately what was wrong, but realized their coach had fallen ill, Johnson said. Assistant coach Brian Wajert led the team in the second half. The Tigers beat Kentucky State 42-35 on Benedict’s senior and high school day.

Conner, a native of Mobile, Ala., is married with two daughters. He is in his second year at Benedict after a successful career as an assistant at Alabama A&M. He played college football at Jackson State University and later in both the United States Football League and the Canadian Football League.

-- Sammy Fretwell