Oklahoma State Forward and Raleigh native Tyrek Coger died Thursday night at Stillwater Medical Center after he collapsed during a team workout earlier in the day, the school announced.
The 21-year-old graduated from Word of God Christian Academy in Raleigh. No cause of death was cited in the team's statement, but ABC11 has learned that it was 99 degrees in Oklahoma Thursday, with a heat index of 115 degrees.
"Tyrek was excited to be at Oklahoma State and had such passion for the game and was looking forward to being an OSU Cowboy," coach Brad Underwood said. "Losing a member of the team is like losing a member of the family. But we know our loss pales in comparison to the pain his family is going through."
Coger moved to Stillwater, Oklahoma earlier this month after transferring from Cape Fear Community College in Wilmington, N.C., where he averaged 12.2 points and 7.0 rebounds per game last season. The 6-foot-9, 240-pound power forward initially signed with Ole Miss in November but was ruled ineligible due to an SEC rule that bars junior college transfers from competing unless they've played three consecutive semesters at the same school. He then chose Underwood and the Cowboys.
Last month, Coger told the Tulsa World that he was excited about joining Underwood's program and playing with standout point guard Jawun Evans this season.
"They look for me as a threat to come in with me and Jawun being a good pick-and-roll [combination]," Coger told the newspaper. "Jawun Evans is a real good guy for them. Looking for someone that can come in and make a real big impact, score, the 15-foot jump shot."
Coger's death is not the first tragedy suffered in Oklahoma State athletics.
A 25-year-old woman was charged with four counts of second-degree murder after she plowed into a crowd of people during the school's homecoming parade in October. Four people died.
In 2011, women's basketball head coach Kurt Budke and assistant Miranda Serna were killed, along with two others, when their plane crashed during a recruiting trip in Arkansas.
In 2001, 10 people were killed -- two men's basketball players, six staffers and two pilots -- when their plane crashed during a snowstorm as they traveled back to Stillwater following a road game in Colorado.