Kent State mourns death of DeVante’ Strickland after the former Golden Flashes LB was killed during shooting early Sunday morning


Kent State is the second MAC football program to lose a current or former player to senseless violence.

Earlier this month, Toledo defensive lineman Jahneil Douglas was shot and killed when a verbal altercation outside of a restaurant in the city turned physical.  Early Sunday morning, DeVante’ Strickland was one of two people shot at a party at an Amanda, Ohio, Airbnb.  Strickland, 27 and the father of two small children, died of the gunshot wounds he sustained after being taken to a local hospital.  The other victim received non-life-threatening injuries.

From the Lancaster Eagle Gazette.

Sheriff deputies were investigating a complaint about a loud party when they heard gunshots and found the two victims.

“It was a party with mostly people from Columbus,” Phalen said. “We understand it was at an Airbnb rental. There were a lot of people there, about 30 or 40.”

He said deputies also smelled what they thought was marijuana. Phalen said deputies interviewed 20 or 25 people during the investigation.

As of yet, no arrests have been made in connection to the shooting.

From 2011-15, Strickland was a linebacker on the Kent State football team.  He played in 43 games during his time with the Golden Flashes, starting a combined 13 games in 2012 (seven) and 2013 (six).  The Columbus native graduated from the university in 2015 with a degree in physical education, with an emphasis on coaching.

“Our Golden Flashes family is hurting today after the passing of one of our brothers,” a statement from Kent State head football coach Sean Lewis began. “DeVante’ Strickland was a great spirit in the locker room, a great teammate on the field and always looking to help others in the community.

“Our sincerest condolences got out to DeVante’ and his family during these difficult ties, especially his two children who he was a great father to.  DeVante’ will always be a part of our Golden Flashes Football Family.”