Bray Wyatt, the ex-COS football player who went on to become a WWE champion, suddenly dies

WWE superstar Bray Wyatt, a former football player at College of the Sequoias who transitioned to wrestling and became a three-time world champion, unexpectedly died.

WWE Chief Content Officer Paul “Triple H” Levesque posted the news Thursday on social media.

Wyatt, whose real name was Windham Rotunda, was 36 years old.

“Just received a call from WWE Hall of Famer Mike Rotunda who informed us of the tragic news that our WWE family member for life Windham Rotunda — also known as Bray Wyatt — unexpectedly passed earlier today.

“Our thoughts are with his family and we ask that everyone respect their privacy at this time,” Triple H posted.

Rotunda, who wrestled from 2009 up to January 2023, had been away from the ring since February due to an undisclosed illness, according to Wrestling Observer Figure Four Online.

Fightful, which covers wrestling, mixed martial arts and boxing, reported earlier this month that Rotunda’s illness was career and life threatening.

Rotunda, the son of WWE Hall of Famer Mike Rotunda, began wrestling in 2009 the developmental territories before joining WWE NXT in 2010 under the name of Husky Harris as was later part of The Nexus.

He made the main roster in late 2010 and has been with WWE since, starting a faction the Wyatt Family and was later known to fans as The Fiend.

Prior to joining wrestling, Rotunda played for the College of the Sequoias for two seasons under Curtis Allen in 2005 and 2006.

In his sophomore year, Rotunda was named second team All-American and first team All-District and All-Region.

Rotunda earned a scholarship to play at Troy.

Rotunda was a Raiders fan, often voicing support for the Silver and Black on social media.