student-athletes, NCAA, college athletics, athletics, injuries, assumption of risk, medical expenses


Student-athletes spend years training, perfecting their sport, and working hard in school in order to make it to the big leagues: Division I College Athletics. However, when student-athletes finally get there, they are met with empty promises, and often leave with injuries that no one took the time to warn them about. That is because, despite being told that they must sign an agreement with the National Collegiate Athletic Association (“NCAA”) which binds them to the organization’s rules, athletes learn quickly that the other side of that agreement is rarely, if ever, upheld when they need it. Courts fail to recognize the coercive nature of the relationship between the NCAA and student-athletes, and completely ignore the duty of the NCAA to adequately inform athletes of the potential risk of their athletic participation. The long-relied-upon assumption-of-risk doctrine utilized by the NCAA as a defense should no longer be accepted by the courts, as it is clear that the nature of participation in athletics is not always entirely voluntary. Thus, the NCAA should be held liable for the lifelong medical expenses of student-athletes brought about by injuries sustained while acting as athletic representatives of their school.