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With Leach in ‘critical’ condition, Saban sends prayers

Mississippi State head football coach Mike Leach is reportedly in “critical” condition after experiencing a health emergency Sunday evening.

According to a statement released by the Bulldogs’ athletic department, Leach suffered a “personal health issue at his home.” The university offered no further comment.

Citing multiple sources, the Jackson, Miss., Clarion Ledger reported that Leach collapsed at his Starkville home and suffered a massive heart attack.

The Mississippi State head coach, 61, went without medical attention for 10-15 minutes after the incident took place. According to Sports Illustrated, after being stabilized at Oktibbeha County Hospital, Leach was airlifted to University of Mississippi Medical Center, where he remains in intensive care Monday.

Leach has received an outpouring of support from his colleagues, including Alabama’s Nick Saban, who released a statement Monday morning sending prayers to the Bulldogs’ head coach.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with Mike Leach, his wife Sharon, their family and the doctors treating him,” said Saban. “Mike’s infectious personality and passion for the game have impacted the sport in so many positive ways during his career.”

Leach is in his third year at Mississippi State, which is his third head coaching stint. The “Air Raid” extraordinaire formerly led the football programs at Texas Tech and Washington State. Considered an offensive mastermind, Leach holds a combined record of 158-107.

Defensive coordinator Zach Arnett will oversee Mississippi State’s football program in Leach’s absence, according to ESPN. The Bulldogs are preparing for their Jan. 2 matchup against Illinois in the ReliaQuest Bowl.

Dylan Smith is the editor of Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @DylanSmithAL

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