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NCAA Head Injury Lawsuit Settlement

NCAA $70 million fund created to determine if athletes suffered traumatic brain injury from head injuries while playing college sports.

New Precedent With Lawsuit Settlement

July 29, 2014 via espn.com. CHICAGO -- The NCAA agreed Tuesday to settle a class-action head-injury lawsuit by creating a $70 million fund to diagnose thousands of current and former college athletes to determine if they suffered brain trauma playing football, hockey, soccer and other contact sports.College sports' governing body also agreed to implement a single return-to-play policy spelling out how all teams must treat players who received head blows, according to a Tuesday filing in U.S. District Court in Chicago. Critics have accused the NCAA of giving too much discretion to hundreds of individual schools about when athletes can go back into games, putting them at risk. Unlike a proposed settlement in a similar lawsuit against the NFL, this deal stops short of setting aside money to pay players who suffered brain trauma. Instead, athletes can sue individually for damages, and the NCAA-funded tests to gauge the extent of neurological injuries could establish grounds for doing that. Ramogi Huma, president of the National College Players Association, told ESPN's Tom Farrey that the NCPA objects to the settlement because it includes no money for players who have been concussed, forcing them to sue their schools to pay for any treatment related to concussion symptoms. "There's also no support for players actually suffering from those conditions, from effects of TBI [traumatic brain injury] from that sport," Huma said. "They should have gotten support for players as part of the settlement rather than forcing players to fend for themselves." Huma told ESPN the settlement also falls short of protecting current players because it does not mandate new return-to-play protocols. Instead, the NCAA and the plaintiffs agreed that remaining guidelines for schools and the implementation of those guidelines are subject to the NCAA's rule-making process. More details here -  story.

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