CINCINNATI -- Members of the University of Cincinnati football team are honoring a fallen teammate after his death last month.
Freshman offensive lineman Ben Flick was one of two young men killed in a Hanover Township crash in September. To commemorate his life, each player will wear a "Flick" decal for the rest of the year, head football coach Tommy Tuberville tweeted Wednesday.
While the team comes to grips with the accident that killed Flick and his childhood friend and injured two others, they say they are finding solace on the field.
"We remember Ben. We'll never forget," said offensive lineman Austen Bujnoch.
Flick, a recent graduate of Hamilton High School, was one of four college freshmen involved in the crash that happened on Stahlheber Road at about 10:20 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 21.
Sean VanDyne, Flick’s close friend and the driver of the vehicle, died from his injuries a few days after the crash. UC football players Mark Barr and Javon Harrison were also passengers in VanDyne's 2009 Chevrolet at the time of the crash. Barr still remains at UCMC in intensive care. Harrison was treated and released.
Members of the UC football team bared their grief Tuesday to 9 On Your Side about the crash that took the life of one of their own.
“It has been a lot of hard times. We've bonded together a lot over it," said quarterback Brendon Kay.
The team attended funeral services for Flick last week.
"There wasn't anything normal for the first four or five days after the car wreck. And rightly so. It's devastating for all of us," said Tuberville.
Both Bujnoch and Kay said getting back into the game has been therapy.
"When you're on the field, practicing or playing, you can actually get your mind off of things. So I think that does help," Kay said.
"Ben's locker always will affect me. But he would want us to have fun, he'd want us to go out there and win,” Bujnoch added. “He wouldn't want us worrying about him. That's what we're going to do."
Tuberville said he’s sticking with the old adage that time heals all.
“And so we'll just have to keep working at it, try to keep them as focused as we can,” he said. “This is a lot more serious situation that a football game.”
A game that's now equal parts healing and remembering.
"We're dedicating the season to Ben,” Bujnoch said. “And that's all I have to say about that, really.”
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