PSU football player recovering after brain surgery - KPTV - FOX 12

PSU football player recovering after brain surgery

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Steven Long Steven Long
Steven Long Steven Long

Surgeons successfully removed a noncancerous growth from the brain of a Portland State University football player this weekend.

"I will overcome and be back on the field," read a message posted on behalf of Steven Long on a Facebook page dedicated to his recovery.

The running back played for Lake Oswego and Sherwood High Schools before signing with the Vikings.

Long officially began playing for the team this spring, after sitting out last season as a gray-shirt. Previously, he was named the Oregon's 6A Offensive Player of the Year, after leading Lake Oswego to a state championship.

"I've never seen anyone with a more positive, great outlook on his situation, and things ever, in my career," said Nigel Burton, head coach of the PSU football team.

A cell phone picture Burton took of Long after the surgery shows the freshman running back smiling in his hospital room at OHSU, white bandages covering his head.

Doctors found the growth after Long had two seizures in his campus dorm room Thursday morning.

"His eyes were in the back of his head, so I knew right away, that's a seizure," said Adam Futter, Long's roommate and teammate. Steven's girlfriend woke Futter for help after Steven began shaking around 4 a.m.

Futter knew exactly what to do because his relatives have suffered from seizures before, he said.

"He was having problems breathing, so I held him up and propped his head up and was patting his back to see if he could cough up something and he had," said Futter. "And after that he had a second seizure. So I had to leave him alone, because you're not supposed to touch anybody when they have seizures."

The following days were nerve-wracking for Long's family, teammates and coaches, as doctors tried to figure out what was behind the seizures.

"It was scary. It was like being a parent and hearing some news about your child," said Burton. "And he handled it a lot better than I did or his dad did. His strength has kind of helped us."

It will likely be months before Long can play full contact football again, but Burton was hesitant to discuss a timeline.

"I will never doubt that kid, one moment, ever," he said.

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