Kirk Urso, a rookie midfielder for the Columbus Crew
of Major League Soccer, died Sunday at the age of 22, the Columbus Dispatch reported.
Urso was taken to a Columbuis, Ohio, hospital shortly after midnight and pronounced dead at 1:51 a.m. The coroner's office is handling the investigation, according to the report, and a cause of death has not been determined.
A statement issued by the Crew said the club will have no further comment. An autopsy is scheduled for Monday morning.
Urso played in six games for the Crew, including five starts, but has been out since May after undergoing surgery for right adductor tendinitis.
He was not with the team for its recent road trip against D.C. United.
The Crew's reserve league match scheduled for today against D.C. has been canceled.
Urso was a star at North Carolina, which won the NCAA title last fall in Urso's senior season.
Fellow rookie Ethan Finlay, Urso's roommate, met Urso when he was 14 years old.
"The thing that stood out to me was how good he was but also how humble and friendly he was," Finlay said in a text message to The Dispatch. "He had a great sense of humor, one that could brighten even the saddest of days. He was a one-of-a-kind and that's why I'm going to miss him."
"We are deeply saddened by the death of Columbus Crew player Kirk Urso," Major League Soccer Commissioner Don Garber said. "Major League Soccer mourns his death and sends our condolences to his family."
- Major League Soccer
- Columbus Crew
- Kirk Urso