Former Ohio State Defensive Back Dies in Apartment Fire

Former Ohio State defensive back De'Van Bogard died in an apartment fire in Elyria, Ohio Tuesday morning, according to The Columbus Dispatch. He was 27 years old. The Elyria Chronicle-Telegram says the fire began at 2:21 a.m. local time. Bogard was found by firefighters lying inside the building's door. According to the Chronicle, the fire was determined to be accidental. Bogard was believed to have been in bed before being alerted to the fire. 

Bogard worked as an assistant high school football coach in Elyria before his death. "With profound sadness, we are attempting to process the tremendous loss of a very beloved football coach, De'van Bogard," Elyria City Schools said in a statement posted to its Facebook page. "We can't say enough how loved, admired and respected he was by the Elyria Schools community and most especially by the athletes, coaches and families involved in Elyria Pioneer Football.

"The team is grieving his tragic death. We extend our deepest sympathies to his family and friends. We are deeply grateful for the impact he's had on the football program and its many athletes and students." Bogard was a member of Urban Meyer's first recruiting class at Ohio State. He looked to have a promising football career, but it was derailed by knee injuries in three consecutive seasons. 

Bogard was a four-star prospect in the 2012 class, according to 247Sports. He was the first freshman to have the black stripe removed from his helmet in preseason camp, which signified his status as a true member of the football team. Bogard was a member of the 2014 Ohio State Buckeyes team that won a national championship. 

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"Soak in the moment. Especially at night," Bogard said in 2014, per cleveland.com. "The night games in the Shoe are the best games. Everybody goes to the kickoff, we all slap each other's hands, 'cause we know we're hyped. We're energetic, we get the crowd into it. It's like a movie scene. You just look around and see everyone in the stands, all the red, the lights on, it's like the movies. You just go, kick that ball off, get them down, get our defense on the field, get ready for that game."