Edward Aschoff, a college football reporter for ESPN, died on Tuesday after battling an illness, according to ESPN. He was 34 years old. Aschoff died on the same day as his 34th birthday. He joined ESPN in 2011 as part of the SEC blog network.
"We are very sorry to have to share the devastating news of the tragic passing of friend and ESPN colleague Edward Aschoff," ESPN said in a statement. "He died earlier today, his 34th birthday. Our thoughts are with his loved ones, including his fiancée, Katy."
Aschoff spent time with the USC Trojans, and coach Clay Helton was surprised when he heard the news.
"Very, very sad," Helton said. "Very surprising. Wish nothing but the best for his family. Our condolences go out. He was nothing but first class to this organization and always to me. Ed, you'll be missed."
A number of Aschoff colleagues reacted to the news on Twitter. Louis Riddick, who covers the NFL for the network wrote: "The news about the passing of our ESPN colleague Ed Aschoff today at age 34, on his birthday, is beyond words. It's simply heartbreaking. I didn't know Ed personally. But I didn't need to in order to feel what I am feeling. Pray for his family. And tell yours that you love them."
"All of us who worked with Ed Aschoff are devastated," SportsCenter anchor Stan Verrett wrote. "We taped a weekly college football segment here in LA. I learned to block out an hour, or two, after, because inevitably, we'd have long talks, about sec football, careers, life. I will miss those conversations and Ed, dearly."
"Edward Aschoff was my other little brother and I don't have the words to fill the hole in my heart tonight," ESPN senior writer Ryan McGee wrote.
Aschoff was a highly respected writer in the industry, as he won first place in the Football Writers Association of America writing contest in the enterprise category back in 2016. He won the award with Adam Rittenberg as they wrote a story about how race plays a role in college football after several African American players talked to them about experiencing racism on campus.
Aschoff spent time in Atlanta when he was with ESPN, but move to the Los Angeles in 2017 where he did more national coverage instead of just SEC. He covered different teams all across the country for ESPN.com, SportsCenter, SEC Network and ESPN Radio. He also did sideline reporting for college football games.