Ohio State Receiver Carnell Tate’s Mother Killed in Drive-By Shooting In Hometown Before He Plays His First College Game

Ohio State freshman wide receiver faces tragedy nearly two months ahead of his first college football season. Carnell Tate’s mother was killed in a drive-by shooting in Chicago on Sunday morning.

The 40-year-old woman was rushed to a nearby hospital and identified as Ashley Griggs. She was excited after he enrolled early at Ohio State earlier this year and recently posted about his No. 17 jersey up for sale on various athletic sites.

Ashley Griggs, the mother of Ohio State freshman wide receiver Carnell Tate, killed in a drive-by shooting in Chicago over the weekend. (Photos: @carnelltate/ Instagram screenshot)

Ohio State’s associate athletic director released the following statement that read in part, “Our coach and coaches are aware of this terrible tragedy, incredibly saddened and they, along with our players, will support Carnell in any way they can during this most difficult time.”

Drive-by Shooting

Tate is originally from Chicago but moved to Bradenton, Florida, to play at IMG Academy, which is a boarding school.

His mother still lived in the Chicago area and gathered with friends and former high school classmates after a Marshall High School reunion. The police reported that shots were fired at the 4000 block of West Washington Boulevard around 2 a.m. on Sunday morning. Griggs was hit several times and pronounced dead on arrival at Mount Sinai Medical Center.

Three men and a woman, who ages range from 38-42, were also wounded, but Griggs was the only person killed.

One of the victims confirmed that the suspect was in a car driving by when the shots were fired.

An investigation is ongoing and no one is currently in custody.

Big Expectations

Tate graduated from high school in December and enrolled at Ohio State in January. He was an Army All-American and ranked as the 22nd player in nation by 247sports.

The 6-foot-2 receiver spent his freshman and sophomore years playing at Marist High School in Illinois before transferring to IMG. He had 750 receiving yards and eight touchdowns as a senior.

Tate came in with high expectations to help fill the void of the talent the Buckeyes lost in the NFL draft over the past few seasons. In 2022, Chris Olave was drafted by the New Orleans Saints and Garrett Wilson was drafted by the New York Jets. The Seattle Seahawks took Jaxon Smith-Njigba in the 2023 NFL draft. All three players were first-round picks.

As for Tate, he has shown early signs of being the next big-name receiver to come from “Wide Receiver U.” He easily beat man coverage during the spring game in April for his first unofficial college touchdown. The Buckeyes’ first game is Sep. 9 at home against Youngstown.

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