Former Boise State fullback and linebacker Dan Paul died unexpectedly earlier this week at the age of 30.
Paul played for Boise State from 2008-2012 and was part of 2010 Fiesta Bowl championship team. He scored four touchdowns during his career, including three in one game against Nevada in 2009.
Boise State confirmed his death Thursday afternoon, and Boise State senior associate athletic director for external operations Brad Larrondo told KTIK radio that Paul died at home overnight, sometime late Tuesday night or early Wednesday morning.
“It’s something that hits you hard because he was 30 years old and somebody that was part of the Fiesta Bowl team,” Larrondo said. “Dan was just an awesome teammate and someone that was a blue collar Bronco playing that fullback position. He went out there and sacrificed his body .... It’s a tough day.”
According to Larrondo, Paul was married and living in Oregon, where he worked for the family business, Paul Brothers Construction.
Several former teammates and friends took to social media to remember him Thursday once the news began to go public.
“I love you Dan Paul! One of the most energetic, fun loving guys I’ve ever met! And such an amazing friend and teammate! I’m truly at a loss for words,” former Bronco Hunter White said on Facebook.
Paul saw action in nine games as a true freshman at linebacker and special teams in 2008 and had his first and only career interception. He switched to full back in 2009 (when Boise State went 14-0 and won the Fiesta Bowl) and took over as the starter due to an injury to Richie Brockel.
He missed the 2011 season due to injury, but returned in 2012 to play in 13 games as a redshirt senior. He had three catches for 25 yards as a senior and scored one touchdown.
“Dan was easily one of the most enjoyable people to be around in college,” former Boise State and current NFL safety George Iloka said on Twitter. “Rest in Peace Dan.”
Boise State went 61-5 in the five years Paul was in the program.
“After we won the Fiesta Bowl, the mayor said they were planting a tree that would be lined with all of our names. I don’t think it ever happened. Can we get a tree for Dan Paul? Let’s make it happen!” former Boise State defensive lineman Chase Baker, a teammate and friend of Paul’s, said on Twitter.
HOPS STOP HAWKS: Hillsboro scored all it needed in the second inning to knock off Boise 3-1 in a Northwest League baseball game Thursday.
The Hops (17-10) scored all three of their runs in the second.
Boise (13-14) loaded the bases without a hit in the ninth, scoring its lone run on a wild pitch.
SALE CAPTURES MORE MEDALS: Boise State’s Lauren Sale captured three more medals Thursday at the Pacific Games in Apia, Samoa.
Swimming for Samoa, Sale ran her medals total to five. She claimed the bronze medal in the 100-meter backstroke, then swam as part of Samoa’s silver-winning 200-meter freestyle and bronze-winning 400-meter freestyle relay teams.
Sale will swim Friday in the 200-meter individual medley.