Zach Hoffpauir, a university football standout at Stanford and an Arizona highschool athletic star who also tried a career in baseball, has died suddenly in Arizona, consistent with the Maricopa County Medical Examiner’s office.
A medical examiner’s database says that Hoffpauir, who was only 26 years old, died on May 14. The medical examiner’s report isn’t yet complete and doesn’t yet list a explanation for death. It lists his full name as Zachary Thomas Hoffpauir. The athletic standout’s father, Doug Hoffpauir, also confirmed his son’s death to AZCentral, which called Zach Hoffpauir one among the best athletes in Arizona highschool history. Doug Hoffpauir also didn’t provide any details on how Zach Hoffpauir died.
According to AZCentral, Hoffpauir was staying together with his dad in Arizona during the COVID-19 coronavirus crisis. His dad told the newspaper that Zach’s death was “hard because he loved coaching. He was so excited to urge back to Northern Colorado and check out to influence lives beyond football.” He added: “He had such a lot to seem forward to.” Hoffpauir got his start at Peoria Centennial, where he played football and baseball.
On social media, Hoffpauir wrote that he was looking forward to a replacement career as a teacher for Northern Colorado Football. “Excited for this chance with @unc_bearsfb time for a culture change,” he wrote on Instagram on April 7. His Instagram posts showed him having fun with friends, fishing, during a baseball uniform and with relations .
According to UNC, Hoffpauir was “Assistant coach – Safeties” since February 2020.
His last tweet came on May 10. In recent tweets, he discussed the Michael Jordan documentary.
@AzizShittu ??? https://t.co/PV6YSKi1Jy
— Zach Hoffpauir (@zach_hoffpauir) May 11, 2020
Tributes flowed certain Hoffpauir on social media. “Shook up about this. Zach could illuminate an area love it was nothing, and had this amazing, unique personality. Praying for the Hoffpauir family during this point ,” wrote Zach Ertz, who played for the Philadelphia Eagles.
Here’s what you would like to know:
Stanford Football Wrote a Moving Tribute to Hoffpauir
We are heartbroken for the tragic loss of our brother, Zach Hoffpauir, gone far too soon. Zach lit up every room he walked into, intent on giving his vitality and passion to bring out your best.
Our thoughts and love are with Zach’s family and friends.
Rest In Peace, Hoffpic.twitter.com/lAEXjLRv4S
— Stanford Football (@StanfordFball) May 15, 2020
Stanford football had close ties to Hoffpauir, and its official Twitter page wrote this tribute:
We are heartbroken for the tragic loss of our brother, Zach Hoffpauir, gone far timely . Zach lit up every room he walked into, bent giving his vitality and keenness to bring out your best.
Our thoughts and love are with Zach’s family and friends.
Rest In Peace, Hoff
Stanford Head coach David Shaw wrote on Twitter, “Life isn’t almost what you accomplish. i think life is about how you influence others. a day Zach Hoffpauir gave his love and keenness to his family, his teammates and therefore the players he coached. Our prayers are with the Hoffpauir family, though Zach you’re always with us.”
UNC Bears Football wrote, “Our hearts are heavy with the tragic news of Coach Zach Hoffpauir. His impact on our team and therefore the energy he brought will never be forgotten.”
Hoffpauir Was a Football Standout Who Also Excelled at Baseball
Hoffpauir was a well-rounded athlete. A 2018 article on MiLB.com described him as a “D-backs prospect” who was playing Class A ball.
“An All-Pac-12 performer in both football and baseball while at Stanford from 2013-2015, Hoffpauir signed with the D-backs after they chose him within the 22nd round of the 2015 Draft,” the article says. He could have gone to the NFL. He told the location he worried about concussions, saying, “I didn’t want to risk my health. I took a while and talk and talked to some people, and ended up thinking that football wasn’t worthwhile . Money is great, but my health is more important.”
The UNC website says that Hoffpauir “spent time in his home state of Arizona working as a highschool assistant before joining the staff at Northern Colorado.”
UNC also provided this bio for Hoffpauir’s athletic career:
He attended Stanford University where he was a two-sport athlete on the nationally ranked football and team . Hoffpauir was on the 2012, 2013 and 2015 Pac 12 Championship football teams that went on to win the Rose Bowl in 2012 and 2015. He also helped the team reach the NCAA Super Regionals in 2014.
The starting strong safety for the Cardinal in 2014, his junior season, Hoffpauir earned All-Pac 12 mention honors starting in 11 games and playing in 12. He ended the season with 44 total tackles, 25 solo and 4.0 for a loss to travel together with his five pass breakups. Hoffpauir entered his senior season as a Phil Steele third team preseason All-Pac 12 selection and ended up with 35 tackles on the year.
On the diamond , Hoffpauir was a two-time All-Pac 12 mention selection. He hit .324 with seven home runs and 35 RBI as a sophomore and was named to the Bloomington Regional All-Tournament team helping the Cardinal upset No. 4 national seed Indiana to advance to the Super Regionals.
Hoffpauir was drafted within the 22nd round (No. 646 overall) of the 2015 MLB Draft by his home state Arizona Diamondbacks. He went on to play for the team’s Class a brief season affiliate the Hillsboro Hops.
In a podcast interview, Hoffpauir discussed how he overcame psychological state issues. He spoke about the importance of playing soccer as a youth. He also discussed growing up during a conservative Christian family, also because the importance of sports in his life. Hoffpauir also talked about being a multi-sport athlete and went through his sports career’s progression. What did he consider the key to hitting? “Don’t miss fastballs,” he said within the podcast.