Samford Univ. student found dead

Jim Griffin (Source: Samford University)
Jim Griffin (Source: Samford University)

BIRMINGHAM, AL (AP/WSFA) - A Samford University basketball player was found dead Tuesday.

Jim Griffin, a senior sociology major from Chicago, Ill., was found dead in his residence hall, according to coach Jimmy Tillette.

Tillette said the senior from Chicago apparently died from an undetectable heart condition.

The Jefferson County coroner's office has not released a cause of death, but an autopsy was scheduled for Wednesday.

Samford spokesman Philip Poole said Griffin apparently died in his sleep. He had played in a pickup basketball game and lifted weights Monday night.

Tillette said Griffin had not had a previous medical condition. He said Griffin's death was "a cruel twist of fate" and left the team devastated.

"The Samford community is profoundly saddened by the death of Jim Griffin," said Samford President Andrew Westmoreland. "He was a popular student on campus in addition to being a member of the men's basketball team. It never is easy when any life is lost, but it is more difficult to lose one of such great promise."

The university has made counselors available to students.

A memorial service is scheduled for 8 p.m. Thursday (Sept. 10) in Samford's Reid Chapel.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)