NCAA Agrees to Mediate Concussion Claims
Former federal judge Layn Phillips is heading back to mediation with parties over concussion claims. This time he will preside over claims by former college football players against the NCAA.
The suit was filed two years ago by former Eastern Illinois player Adrian Arrington and three others. Arrington, now 27, suffers from seizures that he alleges are a product of repeated head trauma suffered while playing as a defensive back. The players, who are seeking class action status, are asking for unspecified money damages, long term medical monitoring, and stricter concussion guidelines at the collegiate level.
On September 24, 2013, both sides announced that they will mediate the issue in November. Layn Phillips, the mediator in last month’s NFL/NFLPA settlement, will oversee the process. It’s doubtful that any settlement will reach levels as high as the massive $765 million agreement in the NFL case; however, since the NCAA case may become a class action suit, the same complexities are present in this case. The NFL settlement covers about 4,500 NFL retirees, and if class action is granted, the NCAA case could affect thousands of players as well.
The mediation does not guarantee a settlement, but it is an indication that the parties are willing to come to some form of agreement.