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Washburn University Football Player Killed, Another Injured in Shooting

A Washburn University football player was killed and his teammate injured in an off-campus shooting over the weekend in Topeka, Kansas.

Dwane Simmons, 23, a junior, mass media major, and university football team member, died on-the-spot due to fatal injuries. Corey Ballentine, 23, who was recently drafted to the NFL by the New York Giants, experienced non-life threatening injuries, NBC News reported.

Ballentine is expected to make full recovery.

The details about the incident, which took place early Sunday morning, are not yet clear. Washburn students who live near the scene of the shooting told KSNT that there was an in-house party going on when the shots were fired. WIBW’s Erika Hall reported that both Simmons and Ballentine were at a party outside of a home near the intersection of SW 13th and Lane Street.

Police are currently investigating the incident and have yet to make any official statements regarding their findings.

Washburn football head coach, Craig Schurig, called the news “heartbreaking,” as the university community mourns the death of the young athlete.

“Dwane is one of the most energetic and well-liked players I have ever coached at Washburn. Dwane’s infectious smile and love for football and his teammates was truly inspirational,” Schurig said in a statement. ”Our prayers of healing go out to his family, his parents Navarro and Yasmine Simmons and Chaquilla Williams.”

University president Jerry Farley condemned the incident in a statement to the campus community as well.

“This was a terrible way to end a day which should have been a day of celebration and a day to look forward to Dwane’s upcoming year at Washburn and the beginning of Corey’s professional career,” Farley said.

The university has made counseling resources available for students or players affected by the incident.

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