Phil Petty, a former quarterback for the University of South Carolina who won two Outback Bowl championships with the Gamecocks, passed away on Thursday. 43 years of age was he. The cause of death is still a mystery. According to USA Today, he passed away following a brief hospitalization in Columbia. Early on Thursday morning, the Gamecock football team announced Petty’s passing on Twitter, adding, “Our hearts are heavy as we grieve the loss of a wonderful Gamecock.” In a statement issued by the university, Ray Tanner, the South Carolina sports director, noted that Phil Petty “typified what a Gamecock truly is.”
“He was a South Carolinian by birth, a fierce football player, a great person off the field, and a favourite of all Gamecocks. He was a devoted father, husband, and friend to many. My thoughts and prayers are with his wife Morgan, kids Sage and McCoy, and all of his friends “Tanner went on. Petty played quarterback for the University of South Carolina Gamecocks football team from 1998 to 2001. He started three seasons, and during his final two seasons, the club won back-to-back Outback Bowls. Petty won the 31-28 bowl game against the Ohio State Buckeyes during his senior year, throwing for 227 yards and two touchdowns.
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In response to hearing of Petty’s passing, former Gamecocks head coach Lou Holtz told ABC Columbia’s Mike Gillespie that he has “wonderful recollections” of the late graduate. “Even though he was a fantastic player, he made better teammates. A player may change. Teammates are friends for life. If I could name him my son, I would be proud “stated Holtz. According to USC, Petty recorded his greatest stats of his career in 2000, completing 170-of-315 passes for 2,285 yards while tossing for 305 yards versus Mississippi State.
Over the course of his stay at the university, he set numerous records. He is the fourth-highest passer in terms of throw attempts (861), sixth-highest in terms of pass completions (454), seventh-highest in terms of passing yards (5,652), and seventh-highest in terms of overall offensive yards (5,797). He and former Gamecock Bobby Fuller are tied for tenth place in passing touchdowns with 28. He was a finalist for the Johnny Unitas Award, which recognises the best quarterback in the country, in 2001.
He received a contract with the Tennessee Titans after graduating from college and played for them for one season before beginning his coaching career. He was hired as Hammond Academy’s offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach in 2003, and the following year, he was hired as a graduate assistant on the Gamecock coaching staff. Sage and McCoy, as well as Petty’s wife Morgan, are his surviving offspring.