Union Mine High School sophomores Nick Brown and Justin Schwartz had just finished leading their junior varsity football team to a 27-8 win over Foothill High School on Friday night when people noticed something wasn’t quite right.
Then Brown passed out, said El Dorado Union High School District Superintendent Stephen Wehr.
The two were rushed to the emergency care, Brown to Sutter Roseville Medical Center and Schwartz to Kaiser Permanente Roseville Medical Center, according to Wehr.
School officials and the boys’ families are unaware of what triggered their symptoms, the superintendent said. They planned to review game tape alongside medical officials to determine what hospitalized Brown and Schwartz.
“There wasn’t anything during the game that would have suggested they weren’t feeling good,” Wehr said.
Brown’s brother Nate Brown, who also played football at Union Mine before his graduation in June, tweeted late Friday, “Nick had a successful surgery tonight, he is asleep and will be for about a week. Thank everyone for your prayers, the lord is on our side.”
On Sunday, Sutter Roseville spokeswoman Nancy Turner said Brown was in critical condition. She could not elaborate on his status due to patient privacy laws.
Varsity football coach Davy Johnson found out about the hospitalization at halftime of his team’s game, which followed the JV victory. A group of varsity players visited the hospitals after their 52-27 win over Foothill.
Johnson, who worked with Brown and Schwartz extensively in practice, said they were talented players who have exemplary backgrounds.
“From a football standpoint, they’re definitely the anchors of the team,” Johnson said. “If they’re not the best two, they’re two of the best players on the JV team. Both are great kids that come from good families.”