The officials said Pata was killed about two hours after leaving practice Tuesday, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel reported Wednesday. Miami-Dade police found the 22-year-old defensive tackle dead at the scene.
"This is a sensitive, real-time, active investigation," said Miami-Dade police spokesman Roy Rutland.
The said officers investigating the case, which was being treated as a homicide, would be at the scene all night Tuesday and would seek a search warrant for Pata's apartment.
University of Miami officials said no decision had yet been made regarding whether a Wednesday practice and a Saturday game against Maryland would go on as scheduled.
"Right now, we're just gathering ourselves and just trying to pull ourselves together," said Miami Athletic Director Paul Dee.
Notable deaths of 2014 [PHOTOS]