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Former Miami Hurricane Sam Bruce Died From Heart Attack at 24, Says Medical Examiner

Adam WellsJuly 21, 2022

Grant Halverson/Getty Images

Sam Bruce, a former wide receiver at the University of Miami, died from a heart attack at the age of 24.

Per the Broward County Medical Examiner's report obtained by TMZ Sports, Bruce's official cause of death was coronary artery disease.

Bruce died on April 28 in a car accident in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. A spokesperson for the Fort Lauderdale Police Dept. told TMZ Bruce was suffering from a seizure when the crash occurred.

"At this time, the circumstances surrounding this incident are not suspicious, and foul play is not suspected," the spokesperson said.

Speaking to Wells Dusenbury of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, Bruce's mother, Tracye Wilkerson, said her son was hospitalized five months prior to his death and said she felt his seizure may have been related.

The nephew of former Pro Bowler Isaac Bruce, Sam was a standout high school player at St. Thomas Aquinas. He was a 4-star prospect and No. 11 wide receiver in the 2016 class when he enrolled at the University of Miami, per 247Sports.

Three-time Pro Bowler Chad Johnson sent a tweet out upon learning of Bruce's death:

Chad Johnson @ochocinco

Sam Bruce đź’”

Bruce never appeared in a game for the Hurricanes and was dismissed from the program in October of his freshman season.

In an April 2021 interview with Footballville (h/t David Furones of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel), Bruce said his dismissal was the result of "a series of things" that piled up over time.

"Either late to meetings—my thing wasn’t really late to meetings—my thing was falling asleep in meetings," he explained. "That was my thing. I get there. I’m living rockstar lifestyle."

After his departure from Miami, Bruce spent time at Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College and Southeastern University. He had tryouts with the CFL's Edmonton Eskimos and the Frisco Fighters of the Indoor Football League.

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