October 18, 2009
Hours after his team's 38-25 win over Louisville, university police said today that Connecticut cornerback Jasper Howard was one of two people stabbed to death this morning outside of a Homecoming dance:
State Police major crime unit and UConn police say the stabbing happened just after 12:30 a.m. Sunday on Hillside Road near the center of campus. Police said two people were stabbed and were found near each other on Hillside Road. Both were taken by UConn ambulances to Windham Community Memorial Hospital. Police said the stabbing happened when a school-sponsored dance at the student union was let out. A fire alarm was pulled at 12:26 a.m., an altercation happened outside the building between two groups of people and then two people were stabbed.
The perpetrator of the stabbing is still at large, according to an emergency alert posted on the University's website Sunday morning.
Howard came from a rough background in Miami and was the first in his family to attend college, according to the Hartford Courant; he was considered a longshot for the NFL but was on track to get a shot in the pros in his second year as an entrenched starter in one of the top statistical defenses in the country. He led the team with four interceptions in 2008 and was second in the Big East in punt returns for the second straight year. He had a solid game in his 19th consecutive start Saturday with 11 tackles and a forced fumble (which he also recovered) to set up a Husky field goal in the win.
You can watch Howard's post-game interview, in which he talks about playing every play "like it's your last." That remark wasn't supposed to be tragically literal.