Former Minnesota-Mankato LB Isaac Kolstad is "fighting for his life" after a weekend assault that led to the arrest of former Minnesota-now-Rutgers QB Phillip Nelson.
Kolstad was on a sidewalk in the town of Mankato when someone punched him, he hit the ground, and then he was kicked in the head by a second person. Nelson was identified by three people who witnessed the assault as one of the two who were involved and police are looking for a second person who they feel was involved in the crime as well.
Kolstad's father says his son has permanent brain damage. Kolstad has already had one surgery and will likely have more this week. Police are asking for third-degree assault charges.
Here's the latest from the Kolstad vigil Sunday night
Kolstad's father has posted an update on Kolstad's CaringBridge website:
"Isaac suffered a severe head injury early this morning. He is currently in Critical condition and fighting for his life. He is young and strong, but the battle he has in front of him is enormous. He had one surgery today to put a pressure gauge in his skull. He may need additional surgeries in the coming days. We do know that his brain did sustain permanent damage. We do not yet know to what extent and won't for many days. He is very sick. Please pray for Isaac and all of those involved."
The family also issued a statement on Sunday.
We are extremely grateful for the outpouring of support we have received during this difficult time. Isaac is a very strong and determined young man, who is dearly loved by his family and friends. We would respectfully ask for your continued prayers.
We would also ask members of the news media and others to respect our request and need for privacy at this time. We have requested that no further information (beyond his medical condition) be released. Thank you for your understanding and continued thoughts and prayers for Isaac, his wife and children, and all others who are involved in this situation. - The Family of Isaac Kolstad
Here's the live report from the spot of the fight from our friends at KSTP-TV
1545 UPDATE: Nelson will be charged with 1 count of first-degree assault and 1 count of third-degree assault later today. Police looking for 2nd suspect.
TUESDAY UPDATE: Rutgers has dismissed Nelson as a result of the incident...
"The Rutgers football family's thoughts and prayers are with Isaac Kolstad and his family," Head Football coach Kyle Flood said in a statement.
Dan Duggan over at NJ.com has the details of the incident- from Mankato police reports:
Kolstad punched Nelson in the back, causing him to fall to the ground, according to a criminal complaint.
Kolstad began to move away and an unknown assailant, described as a white male in his early 20s wearing a red t-shirt and jeans, ran after him. The unknown male delivered a punch to Kolstad's head/face. Kolstad immediately went limp and collapsed to the pavement.
Nelson then pushed past others and delivered a kick to the head of a defenseless Kolstad, according to the complaint.