Sophomore forward Herb Pope was hospitalized Wednesday afternoon after being removed from the Rec Center on a stretcher, according to Rec Center security video cameras and eyewitness reports.
Pope was carried out towards the rear of the building around 4:10 p.m. and placed in an ambulance near the front entrance. According to multiple reports at Zagsblog.com and NJ.com, he collapsed after an afternoon workout and was taken to St. Barnabas Medical Center in Livingston.
Outside the varsity weight room in the Rec Center, medical supplies and what appeared to be vomit were found in the stairwell and on the floor shortly after Pope was removed from the building.
Later in the evening, Jerry Carino of New Jersey Hoops Haven (website) updated the situation as “serious” and relating to Pope’s heart.
Sophomore Michcella Tiscornia was an eyewitness as Pope was en route to the ambulance. He was taken through a hallway of WSOU-FM, which has its studios connected to the building, and down an elevator.
“I was in a classroom and turned around…there were maybe four or five people and the guy on the stretcher,” Tiscornia said. “There were at least three EMT’s.”
Tiscornia also called the scene “very surreal and very random” as well as under control, citing there was little chaos in removing Pope from the building.
“I walked down the hallway…the weight room was empty and I saw a red substance on the floor,” Tiscornia said. “I thought it was blood, but looked closer and it seemed like vomit. I thought he probably had a concussion.”
She added that Pope was wearing a neck brace while on the stretcher.
According to the Associated Press, Matt Sweeney of Athletic Communications said in a phone interview only “that a student-athlete was taken to the hospital.” No updates on Pope’s condition could be provided as per the university’s student privacy laws.
Pope had declared for the NBA Draft on March 29 but did not hire an agent, allowing him to return for another season with the Pirates. His deadline to make a final decision is May 8.
He led the Big East in rebounding last season – his first with Seton Hall – and earned a spot on the All-Met second team this month.
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Brian Wisowaty can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.