A former Utah high school football player is suing for at least $300,000, saying he suffered serious injuries and ongoing medical problems from playing with a concussion after his coach told him to “man up,” to “quit being a p----” and to “get back out there.”
Konnor Finn, a former player at Ridgeline High School in Millville, Cache County, filed suit in 1st District Court against the Cache County School District, its board of education and the Utah High School Activities Association.
The lawsuit says he was injured during a practice on Oct. 11, 2017, when the then-senior suffered a helmet-to-helmet hit. He reported to his coach that his head hurt, and that he thought he had symptoms of a concussion.
The lawsuit says the coach told him “to ‘man up’ to ‘quit being a p----’ and ‘get out there’ and keep playing.” It added that Finn “felt that he could not go against his coach’s instructions” and kept playing in games and practices for two weeks, taking more hits.
Then another coach on the team asked Finn if he was OK because he didn’t look good. Finn told him about the earlier hit, and the instructions to keep playing. Finn then received a medical evaluation and was diagnosed with traumatic brain injury, or concussion, and post-concussive syndrome.
He was admitted to Primary Children’s Medical Center on Oct. 31, 2017, and missed several months of school.
The lawsuit said Finn has continued to experience symptoms including “periods of blackout and memory loss, personality changes, depression and hospitalization,” and “will require continued medical care, pain management, and will suffer loss of a normal life due to the concussion injuries he sustained that were worsened by his coach sending him back.”
The lawsuit seeks unspecified amounts for ongoing medical costs, which it said have exceeded $300,000 so far.
It alleges that the school district failed to hire and train responsible coaches, and that the activities association was negligent in training.