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Hollywood, FL (May 20, 2014) --- Timothy Flasher, a former Florida State University football player who suffers from brain damage alleged to be a result of repeated traumatic head impacts while playing college football, filed a lawsuit today against the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) and the Florida State University Board of Trustees in Florida’s Seventeenth Judicial Circuit (Broward County).

Mr. Flasher played linebacker, defensive end, several offensive line positions, and tight end for the FSU football team between 1981 and 1985, following his recruitment by FSU while he was a student-athlete at South Broward High School.  The complaint alleges that FSU, its football coaches, athletic directors, and trainers, and the NCAA failed to notify, educate, and protect Mr. Flasher from the debilitating long-term dangers of concussions and concussion-related injuries that occur in college football.  Mr. Flasher is now permanently disabled, as he suffers symptoms of neuro-cognitive and neuro-behavioral injuries and is unable to work.

The lawsuit seeks personal injury damages and treatment expenses for Mr. Flasher.  Mr. Flasher alleges that he has suffered long-term physical injury and damages in the form of latent brain damage, loss of employment, loss of income, past and future medical expenses, lost future earnings, and other damages.

According to the lawsuit, the NCAA has held itself out as an authority on the treatment and prevention of sports-related injuries.  Although FSU was charged with implementing and enforcing safety guidelines, FSU compelled its players to use tackling techniques known to cause head injuries to each other in practices and to opponents in games.  Florida State football players such as Mr. Flasher were instructed that a proper tackling technique required that the tackler drive his head into the opposing player.  Football players, including Mr. Flasher, also were ordered and expected to continue participating in tackling drills, even after having their “bell rung” during a drill.  Defensive players would be praised if their tackling technique resulted in a “knockout” hit to an opposing player.  The lawsuit is filed on the heels of several recent medical studies showing latent brain damage in former college football players.

Mr. Flasher stated that no physician of any kind was present during drills or practices while Mr. Flasher played football at FSU, and no FSU football coach or trainer ever advised Mr. Flasher to see a neurologist for testing related to concussion symptoms or neuro-cognitive health disorders during or after his playing days: “Although I played college football decades ago, the neuro-cognitive injuries that I suffered are directly impacting my life now.  I believe the NCAA and FSU should be held accountable for failing to put in place acceptable health and safety plans to prevent neuro-cognitive injuries and for failing to look out for our well being and assure adequate medical care after our playing days.”

Mr. Flasher is represented by attorneys Richard S. Lewis of Hausfeld LLP in Washington, D.C., David D. Langfitt of the Locks Law Firm in Philadelphia, PA, and Andrew J. Weinstein of the Weinstein Law Firm in Coral Springs, FL. For more information, please contact Richard S. Lewis or Mindy B. Pava at Hausfeld LLP at 202-540-7200.