A College of Florida basketball participant who collapsed throughout a sport final December is deciding whether or not to try to get medically cleared to play professionally or money in a $5 million insurance coverage coverage.
Two individuals with information of Keyontae Johnson’s state of affairs advised The Related Press that the senior ahead’s coverage went into impact in July 2020, 5 months earlier than he crashed face-first onto the courtroom at Florida State. Each individuals spoke to the AP on situation of anonymity due to privateness issues.
The 22-year-old Johnson hasn’t practiced or performed since, and in accordance with one of many individuals, the Gators don’t anticipate the 6-foot-5, 230-pound Virginian being medically cleared to return this season.
“He’s very a lot a giant a part of our program,” Florida coach Mike White stated final week. “No change in standing in any respect. Not working towards. Teaching, serving to set up follow, put together for follow, doing a little officiating. He’s lively in drill work.
“He’s getting a style of some particular person conferences with guys at occasions, attempting to encourage, attempting to carry (guys) accountable. He’s doing no matter he can. He’s an unselfish man. He’s a winner. He’s all the time going to be, and he’s doing no matter he can to assist his teammates and to assist us as a workers.”
Johnson, the Southeastern Convention’s preseason participant of the 12 months in 2020, has turned his consideration towards pursing a possible NBA profession, one particular person stated. He would wish medical clearance _ one thing that hasn’t occurred within the 11 months since his collapse _ after which go any variety of exams earlier than being allowed to attend subsequent 12 months’s NBA Mix and/or privately work out for groups.
Johnson’s coverage offers him sufficient flexibility to take steps towards taking part in professionally and nonetheless have the ability to reverse course and make an insurance coverage declare, one of many individuals stated. If he does set off the insurance coverage coverage that Florida paid the premiums on, there’s an choice for him to take the $5 million as a lump sum. There’s no timetable or deadline for Johnson to decide on his future.
If he doesn’t play once more, Johnson has the profitable coverage to offset the lack of future earnings.
School basketball gamers are eligible for the NCAA’s Distinctive Incapacity Insurance coverage Program if they’ve eligibility remaining and have the potential to be chosen within the first spherical of the upcoming NBA or WNBA draft. This system additionally covers soccer, baseball and males’s ice hockey.
Soccer and males’s basketball gamers might be insured for as much as $10 million. Tokio Marine HCC, based mostly in Wakefield, Massachusetts, is this system administrator, in accordance with the NCAA.
Former South Carolina operating again Marcus Lattimore filed a declare on a $1.7 million incapacity insurance coverage coverage he took out in school. Former Florida defensive deal with Ed Chester was one of many first school gamers to profit from an insurance coverage coverage. Chester collected $1 million in 1999 after struggling a knee harm throughout his senior 12 months.
Johnson might be in for an even bigger payday. Till then, although, he’ll proceed his position as “Coach Key.”
He sat on the finish of Florida’s bench through the staff’s exhibition sport Monday, an 80-57 victory over Embry-Riddle, and supplied steerage to outdated and new teammates. Johnson stays enrolled in class and on scholarship. He’s scheduled to graduate in April.
The Gators would like to have him on the ground, however additionally they wish to shield him and assist him make the most effective decisions for his long-term well being and his monetary future.
He averaged 14 factors and seven.1 rebounds as a sophomore in 2019-20 and shot 54% from the sector whereas taking part in 31.3 minutes a sport. He was anticipated to be even higher final season, however as a substitute immediately grew to become a trauma affected person on Dec. 12. He crumpled to the courtroom seconds after breaking a staff huddle within the fourth sport of the COVID-19-delayed season.
Johnson acquired emergency medical consideration in entrance of horrified teammates, opponents and followers earlier than getting rushed to a Tallahassee hospital. He spent 10 nights in hospitals and returned residence in time to have a good time Christmas along with his household. He was readily available for Florida’s first follow following a two-week hiatus.
Florida reached its fourth straight NCAA Event regardless of taking part in a lot of the season with out Johnson.
Johnson and his household have remained quiet in current months. They declined requests to be interviewed for this story however launched an announcement in February saying his collapse was not associated to a earlier constructive COVID-19 check, citing a session staff that included consultants from 4 extremely revered colleges of drugs.
The household didn’t say what medical doctors imagine precipitated Johnson’s trauma.
Johnson hosted a basketball camp for about 60 children in June, getting paid for the endeavor as he took benefit of latest NCAA guidelines that enable present student-athletes to generate income from their title, picture or likeness. He continues to attend on medical clearance that may by no means come.
Johnson advised the Orlando Sentinel through the occasion that it had not been decided if a coronary heart malfunction triggered his collapse. However till the likelihood is dominated out, he’s not allowed to run, bounce or take part in any cardiovascular train.
“That’s why they’re doing exams. That’s why it’s longer than anticipated. They simply don’t know,” Johnson advised the paper. “They don’t know if it was my coronary heart or it might be one thing else. It was only a freak incident; they’re simply attempting to determine it out to verify I’m tremendous earlier than they clear me.”
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