Former Farragut and Arizona basketball star Michael Wright was found dead in his SUV on Tuesday in Brooklyn, N.Y. He was 35.
Wright was found dead of a head wound in the back seat of his Lexus SUV; he was covered with garbage bags, according to police sources. An autopsy is scheduled.
According to a report in the New York Daily News, Wright was staying in nearby Bergen, N.J. and had been reported missing. Neighbors told the Daily News the car had been sitting on the street since Sunday.
The cause of death is a mystery to police.
Police initially believed Wright had committed suicide because a plastic bag was found partially covering his head, sources said. But detectives have determined that he had a severe head wound that likely came from a blow to his head, sources said. We are treating the death as a homicide pending a determination of the Medical Examiner, a police source said.
Wright played at Farragut with Kevin Garnett and Ronnie Fields.
“The class he graduated with was one of the best in Illinois history,” Farragut basketball coach William “Wolf” Nelson said. “He was just a great person that was always underrated because of who he played with in high school.”
The 6-8 forward went on to play at Arizona where his 2001 team lost to Duke in the NCAA Championship game. Wright started for a team that included Gilbert Arenas, Luke Walton, Richard Jefferson and Loren Woods.
Wright was selected by the Knicks in the second round of the 2001 NBA Draft but never played in the NBA. He had a long career overseas, playing on teams in Turkey, France, Poland, Spain and Israel.
“He left his French team in February and was planning to go back to Europe and play,” Randolph Berry, Wright’s cousin, said. “The last time I talked to him he thought he had two more years left, he wasn’t planning on retiring.”
Contributing: Michael O’Brien