A star football player at Triton Regional High School and Lafayette College has died days after his car went off a Burlington County highway and crashed.
Lafayette College in Easton, Pennsylvania, said 21-year-old Brian Keller died Thursday. The Somerdale resident had been at a Trenton hospital since he was flown there following a one-car crash Tuesday on Interstate 295 in Mansfield.
The mechanical engineering major played in all 11 games last season and was named to the Patriot League Academic Honor Roll after achieving a 3.33 grade point average for the fall semester.
“The outpouring of support over the last several days from friends, teammates, fellow student-athletes, coaches, faculty, staff and other members of the Lafayette community is a testament to how greatly Brian will be missed,” college President Alison Byerly said in a statement.
Keller was a two-sport standout in football and basketball at Triton, where he graduated in 2012. As a senior, he was a second-team All-Courier-Post defensive selection, racking up 58 tackles with 71/2 sacks, four forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries.
Keller also played quarterback for the Mustangs, who finished 8-3 in 2011. He rushed for 779 yards and nine touchdowns and threw for 558 yards and six scores.
“It’s crazy. He was such a young guy,” said Rob Hinson, a coach at district rival Timber Creek. “All of my kids played (midgets) with him. I never got a chance to coach him, but he was a Tim Tebow kind of guy. He was big, strong and just a real nice kid. He was super competitive in football and basketball.
“Everyone is pretty banged up by it. I can’t imagine losing one of my guys at 21, 22. It’s tragic.”
Police say Keller’s car veered off the highway, went over a grass berm and hit several trees. The crash is under investigation.
Keller was a mechanical engineering major and was on track to graduate in 2016. The college says he played in all 11 games last season as a tight end.
Services haven’t been arranged.
Staff writer Kevin Minnick contributed to this report.