April 13, 2006

High School Athlete Settles Lawsuits: A former high school basketball star who suffered a career-ending injury when fans tackled him at a championship game has settled lawsuits against the school district and two students for $3.5 million.

posted by irunfromclones to general at 05:31 PM - 22 comments

Wow, talk about a freak accident. I don't really know anything about this except for this article, so it's hard to form an opinion either way. You feel bad for the kid, but it was an accident -- why so much money?

posted by wingnut4life at 05:46 PM on April 13, 2006

The reporting is pretty poor. We are left to assume that the stroke has impaired him for life, and that $3.5 million is just a token of a once promising NCAANBA career.

posted by irunfromclones at 06:00 PM on April 13, 2006

Initial post on the subject.

posted by lilnemo at 06:13 PM on April 13, 2006

...a once promising NCAANBA career. Kay was/is more of a volleyball player, as evidenced by his scholarship to Stanford, which is where he is currently studying. Here's a link to the Arizona Daily Star with additional info. Apparently, to the school district this is a "financial decision" and not an admission of guilt. As for the the 2 students whose parents are settling as well, the school named them as being responsible for Kay's condition.

posted by lilnemo at 06:21 PM on April 13, 2006

Here's another article on Kay from Stanford Alumni magazine. Interestingly, it says no lawsuits were to be filed, but this came out more than a year ago.

posted by wfrazerjr at 06:36 PM on April 13, 2006

Sorry guys- my new link did not ring any bells for similar threads when I posted it. Thanks for the additional info lilnemo.

posted by irunfromclones at 06:40 PM on April 13, 2006

No problem. Its a good follow up thread. Does any one else find it kinda messed up that the school went so far as to implicate students rather than take the blame?

posted by lilnemo at 06:51 PM on April 13, 2006

Dumping coffee in your own lap is an accident too but that didn't stop them from getting a ton of money. Just like every other stupid accident lawsuit. People sue for an arm and a leg over something that was either an accident or something they could have stopped themselves. Nothing different here.

posted by dbt302 at 08:20 PM on April 13, 2006

here's the real deal on the settlement.....he had a partial scholarship to stanford(volleyball) and was a brilliant student...he tested perfectly on the math portion of the S.A.T.'s. the monies awarded are to primarily pay for medical expenses, and a small amt. over that total. this young man has had to learn to walk, talk, and pretty much do everything else again from scratch. i think he and his parents are letting the morons who dogpiled on him off pretty easy. any amount of money is not going to make him the same man he was before...but if it helps at all make his life a little easier, then let's add a few more bucks into the pot. 3.5 million isn't that much...say he lived 52 more years....and dies at 73......thats only about 67 g's a year. that does not cover many medical expenses.

posted by tommybiden at 08:28 PM on April 13, 2006

The school district should be sued for not having the proper security in place to prevent a situation like this, not the parents of two students.

posted by joromu at 09:17 PM on April 13, 2006

two students who have NO business being on the court hurt a fellow student and they/their parents shouldn't be responsible???? what convoluted logic brings u to that conclusion?

posted by tommybiden at 10:29 PM on April 13, 2006

As much as I love rushing the court, this is a sad story. I actually know the guy, the accident messed him up pretty badly. He is still struggling to use one side of his body, and was going to play volleyball at Stanford. Nevertheless the guy is fighting on. One of the nicest people I met. No amount of money can really make up for what happened, but he is definitely a completely different person since.

posted by samuelraphael at 11:12 PM on April 13, 2006

Thats pretty bad. If he was hurt that bad he might not be able to work who knows? All i know is that kid is set for life.

posted by buffalo will never win at 01:06 AM on April 14, 2006

Dumping coffee in your own lap is an accident too but that didn't stop them from getting a ton of money. If you are referring to the McDonald's scalding coffee case, you really should read up on it a bit more before jumping to the conclusion that it's a "stupid accident lawsuit". If he was hurt that bad he might not be able to work who knows? All i know is that kid is set for life. Being so disabled that work isn't a possibility is probably the opposite of being "set for life", regardless of how much money you get to cover your medical bills and living expenses. As a previous person mentioned, it might work out to as little as $67k a year to cover medical expenses and lost wages. That's really not much at all.

posted by grum@work at 01:19 AM on April 14, 2006

tommytrump, thanks for the clarification on Kay's condition. The reporter/paper should have gave a little bit more detail on this. They're making it sound like he's just another greedy bastard, when he probably isn't.

posted by wingnut4life at 07:32 AM on April 14, 2006

If Kay lives to be 80, the $3.5 million would cover health expenses of around $58,000 a year. I wouldn't consider that "set for life" territory. From what I'm learning about strokes, thanks to the unfortunate circumstance of a close relative suffering two of them recently, I think Kay's youth gives him a better chance of meaningful recovery. As I said originally when the accident was reported, here's hoping.

posted by rcade at 07:55 AM on April 14, 2006

I feel for him. It was a sad accident, but thats a lot of money. Was there a chance at the NCAA/NBA? I hope he can recover and live a long healthy life.

posted by tonya at 08:19 AM on April 14, 2006

He obviously is able enough to go to an upstanding school, and be involved in other activities on campus, its hard to believe that he won't be able to work in some capacity. The 67 G's a year may just be a suppliment, maybe medically, to his regular income.

posted by sportsmomma at 08:29 AM on April 14, 2006

For the record, if the money is being awarded in a lump sum and the guy invests it in nothing more than a savings account that pays 3-4% (choosingly to be extremely conservative rather than risking the money in the market, where he could make a whole lot more), he can actually make $122,500 (based on 3.5%) annually in interest alone, living off that without the initial lump sum ever decreasing. So in that sense it is a decent chunk of change. And before someone says that most banks won't pay more than 2% these days (which would only add up to 70K annually), please note those percentages increase with the size of the account. That said, 3.5 mil is not a lot for a life altering injury. A really good accident lawyer could have negotiated a lot more if they were so inclined...

posted by MW12 at 09:22 AM on April 14, 2006

grum, thanks for posting the McDonald's link. There is some great info there, like the settlement being reduced to $480K. I'm sure a lot of people, including me, didn't know that. I believe I'll keep that link handy. Just to clarify, Kay's volleyball scholarship was apparently (and I suppose understandably) revoked as noted in the link posted by lilnemo: Kay, who'd had a volleyball scholarship to Stanford, is majoring in biology and history there. Also Kay is active on his campus. He's one of the leaders behind a push at Stanford for a disabled-students association one that can help make such things as specialized gym equipment more available. Regarding how the money will be paid out, there's this: It will be placed in a tax-free annuity and paid out over the course of his life, starting in five years. Also, a chunk of that money will go toward attorney fees. Doesn't exactly sound like this guy found his way to Easy Street.

posted by Texan_lost_in_NY at 09:57 AM on April 14, 2006

The celebration was short lived and extremely sad but least he's got financial support for the rest of his life

posted by luther70 at 11:22 AM on April 14, 2006

I just did the math I think he'll still be alright you just know he'll probably at least get better as he gets older little by little and when he does he probably won't sit on his ass everyday like I do j/k I just hope what I just wrote all comes true for him and he'll live a productive life however he can

posted by luther70 at 11:27 AM on April 14, 2006

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