TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) — A university in Ohio will pay $712,000 to a former football player who said the team’s coaches and medical staff didn’t pull him from practice right away after he suffered multiple concussions that led to a permanent brain injury.
Former offensive lineman Cody Silk accused the Bowling Green State University’s staff in a lawsuit of failing to address his concussions even though he reported being wobbly and confused during training.
Silk, who is from Sterling Heights, Michigan, said he had three concussions in the fall of 2010 before he was permanently pulled from practice.
On separate days that fall, he could not remember his name or where he had parked his car, the lawsuit said. Silk said he was suffering severe head pain and taken out of some practices but returned without going through proper treatment.
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The Falcons, who play in the Mid-American Conference, were coached that season by Dave Clawson. He’s now the coach at Wake Forest.
Bowling Green said in a statement that it didn’t do anything to injure the former player. It decided to settle the suit because of the uncertainty and risks of a trial, said the statement provided by university spokesman Dave Kielmeyer.
The university initially said Silk signed a liability release to play football and assumed the risks from participating.
In the settlement finalized this week, Silk agreed not to bring further legal action against the university.
Dr. Robert Cantu, co-founder of a center that studies these injuries at Boston University Medical School, evaluated Silk and said in a deposition that he likely suffered permanent post-concussion syndrome because he lacked proper treatment.
Another physician brought in by the state, Dr. Michael Collins, director of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center’s Sports Medicine Concussion Program, found Silk had exaggerated his symptoms and deliberately did poorly on cognitive function tests.
Silk said that after he was no longer allowed to be on the team in the fall of 2010, he dropped out of school because of concussion symptoms and lost his scholarship.
He continues to suffer from depression, migraine headaches, anxiety and difficulty sleeping, according to his lawsuit.