Scott Ross, a former All-American linebacker and brief NFL player, has died. Ross was 45.
Police say Ross was found dead in a car parked near a church. According to The University of Southern California, Ross died of heart failure. The LA Times says that although there were no signs of foul play at the scene, officials will await a toxicology report before making any final determinations.
His accomplishments while playing for USC include:
Ross was a 3-time All-Pac-10 first teamer (1988-90), winning All-American first team acclaim as a senior in 1990 when he was named USC's team MVP, Most Inspirational Player and Defensive Player of the Year. He played in the 1988, 1989 and 1990 Rose Bowls (USC beat Michigan in the 1990 Rose Bowl), as well as the 1990 John Hancock Bowl. He participated in the East-West Shrine Game and Hula Bowl following his 1990 senior season.
He was then drafted by the New Orleans Saints in 1991, but only played a handful of games with the team.
After claiming that he "sustained multiple repetitive traumatic impacts and concussions, for which he was never treated by a physician while he played in the NFL," Ross joined a large lawsuit against the league in 2012. Ross claimed to have suffered from "severe memory loss, cognitive dementia, and...chronic traumatic encephalopathy, a condition caused by repetitive sub-concussive and/or concussive blows to the head."
CTE is most commonly found in athletes who play contact sports, like football, hockey, and boxing.
— USC Trojans (@USC_Athletics) September 23, 2014
Ross leaves behind a 13-year-old daughter.
Image via USC Trojans, Twitter