Florida State's Phil Cofer told after NCAA Tournament game his father died

Florida State's Phil Cofer found out moments after NCAA win that his dad had died

His father Mike Cofer had died after a long battle with an undisclosed illness.

The Lions said Cofer died Thursday.

"Mike was the ideal teammate". No. 4 Florida State had just beaten No. 13 Vermont on Thursday afternoon when Cofer got a call from his mother, Reba. When you heard people talking about a player who always gave 100 percent, it was Mike. Cofer made the Pro Bowl in 1988 after collecting a career-high 12 sacks. His attitude matched his ability and he gave 100 percent in everything he did.

What's helping the Seminoles in these early rankings is that the FPI takes into account certain things such as a returning quarterback - and they count James Blackman based off his 2017 season as starter - as well as things like a teams recruiting and records over the past four seasons, not just what took place in 2018. He brought smiles and joy to those he interacted with and was not only a great player, but also a wonderful man.

Cofer missed the game with an injured right foot and was wearing a protective boot on the bench. He led Florida State in scoring last season with 12.8 points per game. Coach Leonard Hamilton said he will remain with the team for a second-round game Saturday against Murray State.

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Hamilton called Mike Cofer "one of the most competitive human beings that has ever played in the National Football League".

Associate head coach Stan Jones, in his 17th season with Hamilton at FSU, said the players are helping each other through their grief. His father never complained about anything.

"(Mike Cofer) faced this challenge with a tremendous amount of courage and fight and will", Hamilton said.

"Mike Cofer was the biggest, kindest man I had ever met at that time in my career".

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