Ex-Maryland star Cliff Tucker among 3 dead in Texas wreck

Maryland's Cliff Tucker reacts during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against Maine on Nov. 14, 2010, in College Park. (Nick Wass / Associated Press)

BALMORHEA, Texas (AP) -- Former Maryland basketball star Cliff Tucker of El Paso has been killed in a West Texas traffic accident that also left two other passengers dead.

The Texas Department of Public Safety says the van rolled Monday on westbound Interstate 10 near Balmorhea, 180 miles southeast of El Paso.

Sgt. Oscar Villarreal said Tuesday investigators believe the tread on a rear tire separated and the driver lost control.

Officials say 29-year-old Tucker, 29-year-old Andrew Akaji of Belleview, Florida, and 25-year-old Amanda Akaji of El Paso died at the scene. The driver and three other passengers were hurt.

Maryland officials released a statement mourning Tucker, a 2007 graduate of Chapin High School in El Paso who then played four seasons with the Terps, earning a .352 three-point field goal percentage in 131 games.

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