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story.lead_photo.caption FILE — New York Giants offensive guard Mitch Petrus, a former Razorback, throws during Media Day for NFL football's Super Bowl XLVI Tuesday, Jan. 31, 2012, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)

Mitch Petrus, a former fullback and offensive guard at Arkansas who went on to play in the NFL, died Thursday night after suffering a heat-related illness, officials said.

Petrus, 32, died at 10:45 p.m. after being taken to Baptist Health Medical Center-North Little Rock, Pulaski County Coroner Gerone Hobbs said.

He said records indicate Petrus reported feeling ill after working all day outside and in his family's shop in Lonoke County. The cause of death was listed as heat stroke, Hobbs said.

A heat advisory was in effect for a large swath of Arkansas on Thursday including Lonoke County, where temperatures reached the low-to-mid 90s and the heat index made it feel hotter than 100 degrees, the National Weather Service said. A heat advisory is in effect again on Friday for roughly the northern half of Arkansas.

Petrus, who graduated from Carlisle High School, walked on at Arkansas bounced around at three positions - tight end, linebacker and fullback - his first two seasons before finding a home along the offensive line as a junior in 2007.

He was voted All-SEC as an offensive guard in 2007 and as a redshirt senior in 2009, when he did not allow a sack and was a favorite blocker of head coach Bobby Petrino.

Petrus was a preseason All-SEC pick but was unable to play in 2008 because of an academic complication that stemmed from changing his major.

Petrus was drafted in the fifth round of the 2010 NFL Draft by the New York Giants. In 2011, he started three games and played in the Giants' victory over the New England Patriots in Super Bowl 46.

Petrus played for three teams in 2012 - the Giants, Patriots and Tennessee Titans. His final of four professional starts came with the Titans late in the 2012 season.

Petrus returned to central Arkansas after retiring from the NFL in 2013.

CORRECTION: A previous version of this story incorrectly stated Mitch Petrus did not play in an NFL game after was released by the Giants. It has been corrected.

This story originally published at 8:03 a.m. on July 19, 2019

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Archived Comments

  • UoABarefootPhdFICYMCA
    July 19, 2019 at 2:06 p.m.

    i mean its cool and all that other commentors posts dont get taken down half as quick as mine, or most times at all.
    and we are all tired of playing this game
    so lets continue.

  • UoABarefootPhdFICYMCA
    July 19, 2019 at 2:08 p.m.

    i can be a non christian even quicker if you want me to peeps
    are you trying to pretend like you ever care?
    or what lol?
    thats what makes these posts so sickening too.
    you people are scum.
    you are the ego.

  • Seitan
    July 19, 2019 at 2:13 p.m.

    Would you like some phone #'s for some treatment centers?

  • UoABarefootPhdFICYMCA
    July 19, 2019 at 2:17 p.m.

    sorry i dont accept rides from strangers

  • UoABarefootPhdFICYMCA
    July 19, 2019 at 2:49 p.m.

    it could be said i need to work on my pitch
    my tone
    all it can be said is a prophet screams loudest at home

  • Packman
    July 19, 2019 at 5:47 p.m.

    OK barefoot, ENOUGH! Time and place, buddy, time and place. Mitch Petrus was a decent guy and your silliness has no place here. With all due respect, you need to SHUT THE F UP.

  • 0boxerssuddenlinknet
    July 19, 2019 at 6:13 p.m.

    so sorry for the family. and everyone just needs to ignore Uofa she's just an irate Arab always mad at the world. please forgive her she was raised with delusions of grandeur.

  • reality1963
    July 19, 2019 at 7:01 p.m.

    Heart aches for the family. Sad. Here the guy was a hero to Carlisle. Please ignore the bickering that has no place on these posts. A young man died, WORKING! Not slinging dope, doing drive boys, hustling.... damn, have some respect.

  • UoABarefootPhdFICYMCA
    July 19, 2019 at 7:16 p.m.

    im not screaming for respect and im gonna drop out because i made my point.
    another post will be made about him but my points remain.
    this "Enter-tainment" is not "Work"
    Sorry only a person thats never sweat WORK so much they cant sit down... or get back up would say that kind of ignorance.
    and again proves my point how much "sport" is our weakest link.
    today, words are "SPORT"...
    im going. get that mute button in here so i dont have to be disrespected on the regular.
    or at least make everyone follow the same rules of logic and reason.
    prime example of hypocritical cooperative mercy, and the NFL has the unmitigated gall to criticize the "everyman".
    these "Societies" of personage, the hero worship. "who you know" etc. Never been a fan of elitism.
    I almost got into a fight fight once i told a guy OLYMPIANS are mainly trust fund babies.
    and the WORST examples of human society.
    and of course none of this may apply about the diseased.
    but this is a dialogue and monologue of subject matter and a personal examination of the case.
    put "Airs" on it, it's still the circus.
    "work"
    spit in the face of PLATO why dont you?
    Rest in Peace though

  • BobfromMarion
    July 20, 2019 at 3:16 p.m.

    @UOA

    I understand how you and many feel about the sport's world. There are times I agree with you. However, this death had nothing to do with sports. Had this young man been the president of a local bank, that information would have been given. It is standard to include some biography when there has been a tragic death.

    Any time there is a death due to excessive heat, it gets media attention on the front page regardless how well people knew him or as the case may be did not know him.

    Yes, there has been more coverage of this tragedy than if he was not well known. However, much of this additional coverage has been in the sports section.

    You made the comment that this is a small area of readership and it is. However, please consider: What if this young man's grandmother had opened up this section of the online newspaper and read what you have written?

    Consider this real tragedy. A young man, aged 32, has outside chores or work to do. He completes the day, but has symptoms that indicate a serious medical problem. The young man dies and the death is ruled as a heat stroke. This death is even more a tragedy because it might could have been avoided.

    With instant news worldwide that we now have, we are used to reading about tragedies such as this. It is easy to become numb and forget that there may be a grandmother grieving. The grandmother has been blind sighted by a tragedy that most likely could have been avoided.

    When I read comments to this article who knew this young man, know his parents and/or also know his grandmother, my heart began to grieve for his family.

    It is true that there have been some other deaths of people in their 30s who have died due to car accidents, etc. in the past year. There will be more deaths in the future of young adults who have died due to sudden injury or illness. We can get numb, especially, if we didn't know the person.

    Out of respect for this young man's family and friends, please consider leaving some thoughts to yourself or share them privately with others who have the same history and opinions as you have concerning sports.

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