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Illinois DL Bobby Roundtree suffers 'severe' spinal injury in swimming accident

Illinois defensive end Bobby Roundtree suffered a severe spinal injury in a swimming accident. (AP)

Illinois defensive lineman Bobby Roundtree was severely injured in a swimming accident.

The school announced Monday that Roundtree, a junior, suffered a “severe spinal injury” on Saturday while swimming near his home of Largo, Florida. Roundtree is recovering after undergoing surgery on Sunday night at Mease Countryside Hospital in Safety Harbor, Florida, the school said.

No other information about Roundtree’s condition is available at this time.

According to 247Sports, Illini head coach Lovie Smith and defensive line coach Austin Clark flew to Florida to be by Roundtree’s side and visit with the family.

“Bobby Roundtree is exactly what you want in a student-athlete,” Smith said. “He is a hard worker, dependable, a dedicated student and a leader. This is devastating to his teammates, the entire Fighting Illini family and his family and friends. We will give Bobby all the support possible as he battles through his recovery. Please keep Bobby and his family in your thoughts and prayers."

Roundtree has been a significant contributor for the Illinois defense during his two seasons in Champaign. As a true freshman in 2017, Roundtree totaled 50 tackles, four tackles for loss and four sacks. In 2018, Roundtree registered 66 tackles, 12.5 tackles for loss and 7.5 sacks, earning honorable mention All-Big Ten honors.

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