Lawsuit: Willie Taggart negligent in Oregon offseason workout

The Oregonian reports that a former Oregon player sued FSU's head coach after the lineman was hospitalized following a January 2017 workout when Taggart was with the Ducks.
OCTAVIO JONES   |   Times FSU Seminoles football head coach Willie Taggart observes practice at the IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida on Tuesday, August 14, 2018.
OCTAVIO JONES | Times FSU Seminoles football head coach Willie Taggart observes practice at the IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida on Tuesday, August 14, 2018.
Published January 9
Updated January 9

Florida State coach Willie Taggart faces a lawsuit from one of his former Oregon players who was hospitalized after offseason workouts in January 2017, The Oregonian reported Wednesday afternoon.

According to the paper, former Oregon offensive lineman Doug Brenner filed a suit Wednesday against Taggart, Oregon, the NCAA and FSU strength coach Irele Oderinde — who held that same title under Taggart at Oregon. Brenner accused them of negligence for what one of his attorneys called "punishing, abusive workouts."

He's seeking $11.5 million in damages for his "severe injuries, some of which are permanent," according to the report.

Brenner and two teammates were hospitalized two years ago for rhabdomyolysis following the conditioning soon after Taggart moved from USF to Oregon. Rhabdomyolysis, a condition that can be caused by muscle strain, can lead to serious kidney problems.

"Taggart and Oderinde knew of the type of severe consequences that could result from the exercise drill and knowingly conducted the exercise drill with conscious disregard to the detrimental health consequences for the students…" the suit said. "Alternatively, if defendant Oderinde was not aware of the consequences of the exercise drills, he was wholly incompetent to have been hired to perform a job as a strength and conditioning coach for a college football team."

Taggart publicly apologized after the incident, and Oregon suspended Oderinde for a month without pay. Oderinde was USF's director of athletic performance when Taggart was there and followed him to Oregon and Tallahassee.

An FSU spokesman did not return a request for comment.

Read The Oregonian's full report here.

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