One of the rising stars of high school basketball, Caleb White, tragically died on Thursday after collapsing on the court after a workout session. The 17-year-old was rushed to the hospital where efforts to resuscitate him failed. The cause of death has not been officially released, though White’s mother stated that the young player suffered a cardiac arrest. The point guard was well loved in his school and his community and was not only a great basketball player but also accomplished in academics and in his social life.
White, who played point guard for the Pinson Valley High School team, was one of the most promising young players in his state. Ranked no 2 in Alabama and no 48 across the country, it seemed like the young star had everything going right. His family expected him to go on and play NCAA basketball and, hopefully, the NBA. The tragedy occurred shortly after White was involved in a warm up game of pick up basketball. The young player collapsed and was unable to be revived despite being rushed to the hospital.
Pinson Valley High School Principal Michael Turner made the announcement in a letter sent to parents and the media. He stated that grief counseling would be made available to all the students who needed it during this difficult time.
Caleb White’s grandfather remembers “excellent role model” grands on
White’s grandfather George Vernadoe Jr posted on Facebook about his grandson’s death. He honored White’s legacy and reiterated what a positive influence the young player was for not only the family but for their community.
He wrote, “Caleb was an honor student, very respectful, high intellect, excellent role model, phenomenal basketball player, ranked 25th best point guard in his class in the nation and No. 2 in the state of Alabama. RIP Caleb. I love you man.”
Speaking about their family’s high hopes he added, “Our whole family was really looking forward to his upcoming senior season and afterwards, playing for a D-1 school and then perhaps the NBA. But......it wasn't meant to be.”
Pinson Mayor Joe Cochran stated, “I was honored to know Caleb personally and loved the spirit he carried. Life is fleeting. Enjoy every day as the treasure it is. I know Caleb did.”
Standing at six-feet-tall, White was one of the three finalists for 6A PotY as a junior. He averaged 20.9 points, 3.8 rebounds and 3.1 assists for his team the Indians.
AHSAA Executive Director Alvin Briggs said, “Our thoughts and prayers go out to Caleb’s family, his classmates and basketball team and extended school family. He was an outstanding student-athlete and role model. Our heartfelt condolences also go out to the administration and faculty at Pinson Valley, and we pray they find the strength needed during this time of grief.”