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‘He taught me how to love others’: Former teammates and friends remember Michael Ojo

Published: Aug. 7, 2020 at 5:25 PM EDT
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - On Friday, former Florida State center Michael Ojo passed away at the age of 27.

Following the news, those in and around Florida State basketball shared their condolences and memories of Ojo.

“In all of my years of coaching, I’ve never been around a person who captivated the emotions of everybody he came into contact with like Michael. He had to be the most popular person in Tallahassee, and, certainly at Florida State University,” FSU head coach Leonard Hamilton said. “Michael Ojo was a wonderful, wonderful human being. He was a great teammate and really represented what the Seminole spirit is all about. He was one of the purest Seminoles that I have ever been around; he will be missed tremendously by the whole Seminole nation.”

FSU President John Thrasher added, “The FSU family is heartbroken by the passing of Michael Ojo. We’ll always remember him as a kind, compassionate person and a committed student-athlete. I’ll never forget the big hug we shared when he walked across the stage at commencement. We will miss him.”

Former teammates of Ojo’s also spoke in the wake of his death.

“Not only did Michael Ojo teach me to be a leader, he taught me how to love others,” said former Nole and current member of the Orlando Magic, Terance Mann. “He taught me that there’s more to life than basketball ... he would always tell me he has more friends than just our teammates. He encouraged me to get out of my shell and meet new people and taught me how to love FSU for what it all has to offer.”

Boris Bojanvsky added, ““We came to FSU together as two international student athletes that were new to America. We became close friends; that made the transition easier for both of us. We stayed really close our four years in college. For me, Mike was one of those friends for life who don’t come around every day. I’m at loss of words, rest in peace brother.”

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