Former UIndy standout basketball player identified as victim of freak crash on I-65 Friday morning

INDIANAPOLIS -- A former University of Indianapolis basketball player was killed in a freak accident Friday morning when a semi carrying two trailers rolled over on I-65 near I-465 on Indy's south side.

The semi lost control in a construction area in the northbound lanes around 5 a.m. and rolled over, just as a passenger car was traveling in the left southbound lane of I-65. One of the semi's trailers rolled into the southbound lanes, hitting the passenger car going the opposite direction. 

An Indiana State Police trooper was responding to the semi crash when he noticed the damaged passenger car, with the driver unconscious. The driver Daniel Omokhoje Daudu, 28, of Indianapolis, was pronounced dead at the scene. 

Police say a preliminary investigation has determined that a large piece of the rear of one of the trailers broke loose and struck Daudu's southbound car, killing him.

Daudu, originally from Nigeria, graduated in 2015 from the University of Indianapolis with a degree in marketing. He was also a standout defensive player on the basketball team.

Head basketball coach Stan Gouard said Daudu was like family to him.

The university released the following statement upon learning of Daudu's death:

"The University of Indianapolis mourns the loss of Daniel Daudu, who is a well-loved alumnus and former student athlete. During his time on campus, Daniel impacted our entire community. Daniel will be remembered for his athleticism, sense of humor, generous smile and compassion for others. Our hearts and prayers go out to Daniel's family, friends, UIndy basketball and the entire UIndy family."

University president Robert Manuel called Daudu a true light on campus and a beautiful spirit. UIndy's dean of students tweeted, "Absolutely heartbroken. His legacy and heart will continue to inspire us all."

Daudu was a current employee at Toyota Material Handling in Indianapolis.

The driver of the semi was alert and conscious when he was taken to the hospital. Police do not believe drugs or alcohol were involved. 

All lanes of I-65 closed for the crash, but both the northbound and southbound lanes opened back up around noon. 

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