Report: UCF files motion to lawsuit

Updated: April 25, 2009, 11:26 AM ET
ESPN.com news services

Attorneys for Central Florida have filed a motion requesting a summary judgment to the wrongful death lawsuit filed by the parents of Ereck Plancher, according to a report in the Orlando Sentinel.

Plancher, a freshman wide receiver, died in March 2008 after taking part in the team's "mat drills" during an offseason conditioning workout on the UCF campus.

The Ereck Plancher story

ESPN has been following the Ereck Plancher story since his death after an offseason workout last March.

Did Plancher have to die?
Hard lessons about sickle cell trait
Former UCF player speaks out

• Read the lawsuit here

Plancher's parents, Enock and Giselle, filed the suit this past March, alleging that as Plancher struggled and collapsed during an intense workout, the response of coaches and trainers was to "make him stand up and complete the drills."

UCF attorneys, however, are claiming that Plancher had signed waivers that released the university from football-related injury liabilities, according to the Sentinel.

The motion requests Circuit Judge Maura T. Smith to make an immediate decision in favor of the school, based on those waivers.

According to the Sentinel, the Plancher family's attorney, J.D. Dowell, has not filed a response to the motion.

An autopsy revealed that Plancher suffered from sickle cell trait, an inherited condition that, if not attended to properly, can cause serious problems during high-intensity workouts. Coaches and trainers were aware that Plancher had the trait, which has been cited in the deaths of at least 10 young athletes since 2000.

The Plancher family's lawsuit claims UCF was negligent in several areas, including not providing players who had sickle cell trait with sufficient rest and with proper access to fluids.

The offseason workout was conducted by coach George O'Leary and his staff.

Information from ESPN enterprise unit reporter Mark Fainaru-Wada and The Associated Press was used in this report.

ALSO SEE