Chandler Hamilton senior running back Michael Allen's father, Mike, passed away on Wednesday.
Huskies coach Steve Belles said the senior Allen had suffered through complications following an accident five years ago that left him partially paralyzed but was released from his most recent trip to the hospital on Monday night and appeared to improve on Tuesday.
On Wednesday, Michael's younger sister went to wake up their father and found him unresponsive. He was taken back to the hospital but was never revived.
Michael was at school at the time. Belles said Michael opted to practice later Wednesday and went to school Thursday but stayed with family instead of practice on Thursday.
Belles believes Allen will play in Saturday's 5A Division I state championship game against Mesa, but "that would be his call."
Michael has rushed for 1,294 yards and 12 touchdowns this season, including 205 yards against Chandler in last week's 5A-I semifinals.
The team plans to honor Mike Allen with a decal on players' helmets. Other tributes might be conducted by the Huskies, but Belles didn't know specifics on Thursday night.
Hamilton isn't the only football team dealing with loss. Scottsdale Chaparral tackle Andrew Gustafson lost his mother to cancer last month.
"I told the team football is great and everything, but this is life," Belles said. "As unfortunate as it is we have to deal with it in our lives, so you better appreciate the time with our parents and don't always think they're wrong about everything, because you don't know what's going to happen in their lives.