Former Baylor soccer player’s lawsuit claims header drills caused traumatic brain injuries

Waco Tribune-Herald / Tommy Witherspoon / Feb 24, 2022

A former Baylor University soccer player alleges she suffered traumatic brain injuries while being forced to participate in dangerous header drills during practice.

Eva Mitchell, who transferred to Baylor from the University of Kentucky in the spring of 2019, is seeking a minimum of $75,000 in a federal lawsuit, filed Thursday in Waco’s U.S. District Court by attorneys Robert Stem, of Waco, and Jason Luckasevic, of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

The lawsuit alleges Mitchell has been unable to function without assistance for the last 18 months and claims she may never fully recover from her injuries.

The suit claims Mitchell sustained her injuries because of the university’s “negligent and reckless conduct,” which subjected Mitchell and other players to “an elevated risk of neurological harm” by demanding they hit overinflated soccer balls fired from a high-speed ball machine with their heads.

The suit describes a practice in February 2019 in which Jobson and his staff “shot overinflated soccer balls from a mechanical device with the velocity turned up approximately 70 yards away, and the players were required to ‘head’ the ball.”


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