Indiana receiver Isaac Griffith was saved by a combination of his friends' quick action and physical conditioning, and is past any immediate danger from a swimming accident, his doctor said Friday. "A lot of the credit goes to his friends," said Dr. Kenneth Hurwitz, an intensivist at Sarasota (Fla.) Memorial Hospital in a statement released by the hospital. "They put themselves at serious risk to help him. Two or three minutes longer and it would have been a different story." Hurwitz said that brain damage can occur in as little as five minutes. Griffith is listed in serious but stable condition and was able to eat and walk around Friday. A riptide pulled the Indiana redshirt freshman away from shore, and friend Mitch McCune rescued him. Teammates Ty Smith and Nick Stoner were also on the beach, with Smith helping bring Griffith to shore. Griffith is still being treated for "pneumonia, lung damage and risk of infection from the salt water that was trapped in his lungs," the release said. His prognosis for a full recovery is very good. "If all goes well, he should be discharged in a couple of days and be able to recuperate over the coming weeks at home," the release said. Hurwitz spoke with media at the hospital Friday alongside Shannon Griffith, Isaac Griffith's father, who has been in Florida with his wife since early Tuesday morning. Shannon Griffith admitted that news of his son's accident "dropped me to my knees." "It was the worst call I ever got in my life," he said. "Isaac has been winning little battles every day. I know we still have a few more to face, but we have tremendous faith in his care team and are very hopeful that things will be back to normal for him very soon." The release termed Griffith's recovery "faster than Dr. Hurwitz expected." "Not too many people walk away from that," said Shannon Griffith, the head football coach at Manchester University. "Because of his physical conditioning, the daily regimen, the cardiovascular and strength training, good nutrition – all those things. That's how we win football games. For me, now, that's how you save your life."
Doctors credit Isaac Griffith's friends, conditioning for saving his life
Indianapolis Star | Mar 22