Cases & Deals

Universities defend multidistrict putative class action litigation brought by former football players

Client(s) Pennsylvania State University, The; Trustees of Boston College; Brigham Young University; University of Miami; University of Notre Dame Du Lac; University of Pittsburgh, The; and Big Sky Conference, Inc.

Jones Day is serving as lead counsel for all NCAA member institution defendants in a multidistrict litigation ("MDL") consolidating more than 500 putative class actions brought on behalf of former football players. The plaintiffs allege that collegiate institutions, athletic conferences, and the NCAA failed to warn football players of the adverse effects of concussions. The MDL, which began in 2016, is pending in the Northern District of Illinois. Currently, four "sample" or "bellwether" cases are moving forward to test the plaintiffs' class action theories.

Jones Day also directly represents more than a dozen universities named as defendants in the case, as well as the Big Sky Conference, which was named as a defendant in one of the bellwether cases. In June 2020, the court dismissed all claims asserted by the plaintiffs against the Big Sky Conference.

In re NCAA Student-Athlete Concussion Injury Litigation – Single Sport/Single School (Football), MDL No. 2492, No. 1:16-cv-08727 (N.D. Ill.)