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Former College Football Star Tragically Passes Away


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Vince Carbonneau
May 15, 2024  (2:15 PM)
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Photo credit: NCAA.com

The University of South Florida Football community is grieving the loss of one of their own, Mike Ford, this week.

According to Joey Knight of the Tampa Bay Times, the former standout running back died on Tuesday afternoon at the age of 38.
Ford emerged from the Sarasota-Bradenton area as a highly touted prospect before making his mark at USF. During his tenure, he dazzled fans over an eleven-game stretch, rushing for over 200 yards.
Born in Sarasota, Ford had a spectacular high school career, culminating in his senior year when he rushed for 2,836 yards and 37 touchdowns. His remarkable performance included a game where he rushed for 368 yards against Naples Lely.
Known for his 'Built Ford tough' running style, Mike Ford had a breakout season as a freshman in 2007, propelling the Bulls to a number two ranking in the Associated Press Poll. He led the team with 12 rushing touchdowns that season.
During his time with the Bulls from 2007 to 2009, Ford racked up 1,502 career rushing yards and 23 touchdowns on 331 attempts across 34 games, tying for the fifth-most in program history. He also boasted an impressive average of 10.4 yards per carry, the fifth-highest in program history, according to GoUSFBulls.com.
After college, Ford briefly played professional football in Canada with the Toronto Argonauts of the Canadian Football League. He later returned to the U.S. to play for the Sarasota Millionaires and the Southwest Florida Gladiators in adult amateur football leagues.
In 2017, Ford transitioned from football to boxing, training under Harold Wilen, a coach in the Florida Boxing Hall of Fame, as reported by Yourobserver.com.
Ford's untimely passing is mourned by his fans and the USF community, remembering him as a player who left a lasting impact both on and off the field.
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Former College Football Star Tragically Passes Away

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