Illinois pays $250K to settle ex-lineman’s injury claims
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AP) — The University of Illinois has agreed to pay a former football player $250,000 to settle injury claims that helped prompt wider scrutiny of athletics at the school.
The one-time payment compensates Simon Cvijanovic for injuries and for medical costs he incurred as an Illini offensive lineman, and resolves “all potential claims” by Cvijanovic, according to a Monday news release from his Chicago attorney, Bob Geimer. Cvijanovic first announced the settlement on Twitter.
Cvijanovic raised allegations in 2015 that coach Tim Beckman pressed him to play through knee and shoulder injuries. Beckman was fired later that year. Cvijanovic praised the university Monday for more recently “prioritizing player safety.”
The past two years have been tumultuous ones for Illinois athletics. That includes the firing this year of women’s basketball coach Matt Bollant, who was sued two years ago for allegedly abusing players. A university report found the claims were unfounded but last year paid a $375,000 settlement to be divided among the players.
“We sincerely hope this agreement helps Mr. Cvijanovic resolve any continuing health concerns and lets him focus on his future goals and aspirations,” university Chancellor Robert Jones said.
An athletics department spokesman confirmed the contents of the news release to The (Champaign) News-Gazette .