A Maryland judge on Wednesday denied summary judgment to the NCAA in a lawsuit over the death of a former Frostburg State football player, setting the stage for a potential trial in June.
In a significant opinion reflecting how concussions are evolving before the courts, Montgomery County Circuit Court Judge David Boynton ruled that the type of head injury that allegedly killed Derek Sheely — second-impact syndrome from multiple concussions — is not a known inherent risk of playing football. Second-impact syndrome has been described as a condition that occurs when the brain swells rapidly after a person suffers a second concussion before symptoms from an earlier one have subsided.
The NCAA argued that since it’s a sports organization it has no legal duty to protect college athletes. Boynton acknowledged that is true under Maryland law for sports organizations, but determined the NCAA has a “special relationship” since its mission statement is to protect college athletes. Boynton said since there’s not an obvious risk inherent to football, a legal duty to warn exists, and there’s enough dispute in the Sheely case for a jury to hear the arguments. [Emphasis added.]
Holding Mark Emmert accountable for his own sanctimonious bullshit? Man, that’s not fair.