SOUTH BEND-- A member of the Notre Dame football team's administrative staff experienced a medical emergency on the team’s charter flight home from Dublin, Ireland late Saturday night..
Ernest Jones, Notre Dame’s director of player development and engagement for the football team, will remain overnight at Memorial Hospital of South Bend while undergoing further evaluation and treatment for dehydration, according to Notre Dame athletic department spokesman John Heisler.
Jones is listed in stable condition.
Jones became ill and fainted with about two hours remaining on the team's Delta charter flight home, after the Irish beat Navy 50-10 earlier in the day. The flight landed at Michiana Regional Airport about 11:50 p.m. Saturday and Jones was transported to Memorial at that time.
During a press conference Sunday, coach Brian Kelly said that Jones apparently experienced a reatction to some sinus medication when the plane was still about two hours away from landing Saturday night.
An ambulance was waiting at the airport and took Jones off the plane and to the hospital around 12:00 a.m. Sunday.
After exiting the plane, Notre Dame athletic director Jack Swarbrick told WSBT that there was reason to believe Jones would be OK.
Jones is expected to be released from Memorial Sunday afternoon
"All indications are is he is doing well,” Swarbrick said early Sunday morning. “He experienced lightheadedness and an elevated heart rate. Fortunately, we have a lot of doctors as part of our crew and they took great care of him. The flight attendants did a great job and, as I say, everything looks great. As he headed out, he was alert, conscious and talking to everybody and saying he felt okay. Everybody responded effectively and he is on his way to the hospital."
In his role as director of player development and engagement at Notre Dame, Jones serves as a liaison between the players and coaches and other support systems, such as academic advising. He is a person that players can come to if they have a concern or need help but might not be comfortable sharing it with the coaches. Jones also helps coordinate community service projects, and also coordinates and monitors study hall sessions.
Stay with WSBT for further updates.