- Former NFL quarterback and high school football coach Ryan Mallett tragically drowned off the coast of Florida at the age of 35, leaving the sports community in mourning.
- Mallett, who had an impressive college career with the Arkansas Razorbacks and played for teams like the New England Patriots, Houston Texans, and Baltimore Ravens in the NFL, transitioned into coaching post-retirement.
- His most recent role was as the head coach at White Hall High School in Arkansas, where he was deeply valued as a coach and educator, and his untimely loss is deeply felt within the school and broader football community.
Tragedy has struck the sports community with the sudden passing of former NFL quarterback and high school football coach Ryan Mallett.
The 35-year-old drowned off the coast of Florida, as first reported by Deltaplex News in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, and later confirmed by the Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office.
Mallett was swiftly transported from a beach on Gulf Shore Drive in Destin to a nearby hospital, where he was unfortunately pronounced dead.
The news was confirmed by Skip Carr, the assistant principal at White Hall High School in Arkansas, where Mallett was serving as the head football coach.
Mallett’s journey in football began in college, with his freshman year at Michigan, where he served as the backup to Chad Henne.
Following his time at Michigan, Mallett transferred to Arkansas. During his tenure as a Razorback, he started 26 games in 2009 and 2010, with impressive statistics to his name. He threw for over 3,600 yards each season, with a commendable tally of 62 touchdowns and a mere 19 interceptions.
Mallett also played in two bowl games for Arkansas, including a Liberty Bowl victory over East Carolina and a Sugar Bowl defeat to Ohio State.
In the 2011 NFL Draft, Mallett was picked up in the third round by the New England Patriots. However, he saw limited playtime in two seasons before being traded to the Texans.
His career spanned stints with the Patriots, Texans, and Ravens, during which he played 21 games with eight starts.
Although his NFL career was not as illustrious as his college one, Mallett held his own with nine touchdown passes and 10 interceptions before retiring.
Post-retirement, Mallett turned his passion for the sport into coaching. He began as an assistant at Mountain Home High School in Arkansas before being named the head coach at White Hall High in 2022.
The White Hall School District expressed their grief in a statement: “It is with great sadness that we share the loss of Coach Ryan Mallett. Coach Mallett was a beloved coach and educator. We ask that you remember his family, team, students, fellow coaches, and the White Hall School District staff in your prayers.”
The loss of Mallett is a profound blow to both his community and the wider football world, leaving behind a legacy that will continue to inspire future athletes and coaches alike.
His untimely death serves as a stark reminder of the unpredictable nature of life, and the importance of cherishing our loved ones every day.