Former NCAA football player: Concussions ruined my life

The first clip on Adrian Arrington’s highlight real shows him and another player hitting a Purdue receiver so hard, that the player’s helmet flies off.  It’s one of hundreds of big hits he either gave or received during his years as a defensive back at Eastern Illinois University.

Having suffered numerous concussions while playing in the NCAA– Arrington says his personal and professional life is all but ruined.  The former NCAA football player said “it was hard to finish college…. The blackouts, the things I couldn’t remember.”

In addition to serious memory loss and debilitating headaches, he says he can’t be trusted to drive, or be alone with his two young daughters because of regular seizures.  The medical bills are piling up and in terms of work– he can’t hold on to a job.

“It really hurts not to be able to provide for my family,” he said.

Arrington, who lives in Bloomington Illinois, is working with Chicago attorney Joe Siprut on a class-action lawsuit against the NCAA.

Siprut said “What we want and would allow us to declare victory is to get the NCAA to change the game”

Sirput, who is also representing two other football players and a soccer player in the lawsuit, says the NCAA didn’t require colleges to have concussion policies in place until 2010, even though they knew as early as 2003 that multiple concussions could lead to serious long-term health problems. He says the NCAA needs to establish more specific guidelines to deal with head injuries.

The plaintiffs also want the NCAA to establish a fund to pay for medical care for those who have sustained head injuries

“For things to be the way they are, the NCAA needs to something to help the kids that do get hurt in this way,” Sirput said.

6 comments

  • ismael

    Looking for the NCAA to change its game. I see it as looking for money because You failed in life. There are many players who thought the NFL was a sure bet and then there are those who made a bit of money and squandered it away. Those will also be suing. ITS ALL ABOUT THE MONEY.

  • Tara

    Don and Ismael, I doubt the attorney would go through the trouble of filing a Lawsuit, if this guy didn't have medical records to back up his complaint. I applaud him for standing up and fighting for himself and other players. It's easy for you both to just sit back and judge, without walking in this young man's shoes!

  • JohnWillis110

    Ismael did you even LISTEN to the video? It's not about money at all, ITS ABOUT MEDICAL BILLS. Have you ever suffered from seizures, depression or black outs? Medical bills aren't cheap! The NCAA and Universities should pay for medical bills if athletes gets hurt. The same way an employer must pay workman's comp. They make millions off these kids. You're an idiot!

  • Love of the Game

    Nick saban made over 4 million dollars this year and 200,000 for making national championship and 200, 000 for winning and yes he is the coach but he didn’t win because of coaching, his players are down right bigger, faster, and stronger and how much did the kids make, not a damn thing and because a kid that worked hard to get a degree, and earned his scholarship can’t get his healthcare paid for to help him live a life to do for his family in the field of work he earned a degree in, when he was hurt helping a billion dollar business. So just like workmans comp for a dangerous job you apply for and get hurt please help these kids NCAA because without the players there is no money made at all and that’s all it’s about in terms of the NCAA because they are the ones making all the money off these young men and women because as they said as well there are kids in other sports not getting the proper care and guidance form their schools or NCAA.

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