TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — As the Florida State Seminoles men’s basketball team prepares for their Atlantic Coast Conference showdown with Georgia Tech on Tuesday, the emotions from the events that unfolded in Saturday’s game against the Florida Gators are still being felt within this program.
When Florida standout junior Keyonate Johnson collapsed on the floor following an early timeout, it sent a numbing silence throughout Tucker Center, followed by a shockwave of emotions that hit the Seminole team hard.
On Monday, WTXL learned that FSU head coach Leonard Hamilton was ready to respect whatever decision Florida head coach Mike White and their administration were going to make, even if that meant ending Saturday's game right then and there.
It was an unexpected and unfamiliar situation for many to cope with.
“My comment was, fellas, the only thing we can do right now is to pray for this young man. And immediately I had several players on their knees crying and praying," said Hamilton. "And from a coaching standpoint, we always as human beings respond in relation to the experiences that we’ve had, and we try to relate to situations as a result of things we’ve seen, learned, and experienced. But as a head coach, I’ve never experienced anything like this.”
The teams went on to finish the game, which the Seminoles won 83-71.
On Monday, the Florida Gators men's basketball team released a statement on Twitter saying Johnson was "following simple commands and undergoing further tests," as he remained in critical but stable condition Monday afternoon.
Speaking to USA Today, Johnson's grandfather, Larry DeJarnett, said that doctors placed his grandson into a medically induced coma earlier on Monday.
DeJarnett added that he did not know if Johnson suffered from COVID-19, but said "some of the team was quarantined," but wasn't sure if his grandson was one of them that was or wasn't.
This story was first reported by Dominic Tibbetts at WTXL in Tallahassee, Florida.