Football Player, Social Media Star Dies

Spencer Webb, 22, fell and hit his head at an Oregon swimming lake
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jul 14, 2022 4:50 PM CDT
Football Player, Social Media Star Dies
Oregon Ducks tight end Spencer Webb (18) celebrates after scoring a touchdown against Arizona in September in Eugene, Oregon.   (AP Photo/Andy Nelson, File)

Oregon Ducks tight end Spencer Webb has died after falling and striking his head on rock slides at a popular swimming lake near Eugene, Oregon, authorities said. The 22-year-old who was expected to play his fifth football season at the University of Oregon this fall was found about 100 yards down a steep trail Wednesday afternoon at Triangle Lake, the AP reports. He was unresponsive and could not be revived by paramedics or bystanders, the Lane County Sheriff's Office said in statement. Authorities said his death appeared to be accidental.

Webb was also a social media star. His TikTok account, where he often posted about his life and athletic achievements, had more than 550,000 followers. Triangle Lake and the nearby Lake Creek Falls are popular destinations for swimmers who navigate naturally formed rock slides by inner tube and swim in several swimming holes. Webb was expected to compete for starting tight end this fall. During his four seasons at Oregon, he recorded 31 receptions, 296 yards, and four touchdowns. His first career touchdown was arguably his most famous play, a 20-yard catch over a defender on a ball thrown by Justin Herbert in the 2019 season opener against Auburn.

The player nicknamed "Spider" was a consensus four-star out of Christian Brothers High School in Sacramento; a top 10 tight end and top 300 prospects by ESPN, Rivals, and 247Sports; and the No. 1 tight end in California by ESPN and 247Sports in 2018. Multiple Oregon coaches and players acknowledged Webb's death on social media, per the AP. "So full of life in every moment of the day," Oregon football coach Dan Lanning tweeted. Webb is survived by his older brother, Cody, who became Spencer’s legal guardian 10 years ago; sister-in-law, Alicia; aunt and uncle, who all helped raise him.

(More head injury stories.)

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