In January, former Oregon Ducks offensive lineman Doug Brenner sued his alma mater, coaches, and the NCAA for $11.5 million, relating to a series of extreme workouts in 2017. In the wake of the workouts in question, Brenner and two teammates suffered from rhabdomyolysis, a syndrome in which muscle content breaks down and leaks into the bloodstream.
The workouts, argues Brenner, were not focused on improving player performance but rather on discipline. The extreme number of repetitions caused players to vomit, collapse, and even pass out. For Brenner, his case of rhabdomyolysis resulted in permanent kidney damage.
The suit alleges that the head football coach and strength and conditioning coach, as well as Oregon University and the NCAA, were negligent and should have known that such extreme workouts could result in rhabdomyolysis, as similar incidents have occurred at Nebraska, Maine, and Iowa. The lawsuit will be heard in Oregon’s Multnomah County circuit court.
Thomas “Buddy” Bardenwerper is an Entertainment Highlight Contributor for the Harvard Journal of Sports and Entertainment Law and a current first year student at Harvard Law School (Class of 2021).