Per a report from the New Orleans Times-Picayune former New Orleans forward Matt Derenbecker was found dead Sunday at a home he was house-sitting in Ponchatoula, Louisiana. Derenbecker, who was just 22 years old, was found in the swimming pool at the home he was watching after failing to pick up his girlfriend at Louis Armstrong Airport according to the story.
Derenbecker played parts of three seasons of college basketball, one each at LSU and Dayton before beginning the 2013-14 season as a member of the New Orleans program. Derenbecker would play just eleven games at UNO, leaving the program for what was stated to be an undisclosed medical reason.
“This is a tough day for our program, Matt and his family,” Slessinger said at the time. “We sincerely hope that this time in our program will benefit him positively moving forward.”
Sadly for the New Orleans basketball family, this isn’t the only tragedy they’ve had to deal with this weekend according to the Times-Picayune.
Derenbecker’s death was the second tragedy to hit the UNO men’s basketball program during the weekend. Four members of former UNO forward Cory Dixon’s family, including stepfather Michael Miller, 47, mother Leann Miller, 48, and siblings Zoey Miller, 12, and Miles Miller, 7, were killed in an auto accident on Friday night in New Mexico. The family was returning home to Dallas from vacation.
Dixon, a 6-foot-7 power forward, was the team’s leading scorer and rebounder as a senior in 2013-14.