Former CSU football player files lawsuit against NCAA

Skyler Leonard

A former Colorado State University football player has filed a class-action lawsuit against the NCAA seeking damages for himself and other Division I players who played before the NCAA reversed a rule that banned multi-year scholarships.

Durrell Chamorro, a kicker for CSU from 2005-2007, filed the antitrust lawsuit in Indianapolis Federal Court on Aug. 28. In 2005, Chamorro was offered various scholarships from Division I teams, but settled on an offer from CSU.

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According to legal documents obtained by the Collegian, CSU told Chamorro that as long as he maintained the required GPA and did not break any rules, he would receive a scholarship for four to five years. Chamorro was redshirted his first year at CSU under the recommendation of the special teams coach and would later serve as a backup kicker for the team.

In the spring of 2007, then-head coach Sonny Lubick told Chamorro that his scholarship would not be renewed because Lubick wanted to sign a new kicker and give a scholarship to another player, but scholarship caps prevented him from giving out any more.

Chamorro appealed the decision, but it was denied. As a result, Chamorro left CSU because he claimed he could not afford the tuition without a scholarship. Chamorro would go on to graduate from Cal Poly in 2010 with a degree in philosophy.

Recently, the NCAA reversed the one year scholarship rule, allowing multi-year scholarships for players that did not need to be renewed. After this decision, Chamorro filed the lawsuit against the NCAA. According to the initial class-action complaint, Chamorro “would have had more schools to choose to play for or he would have received a multi-year scholarship from Colorado State University.”

Furthermore, the complaint states that, “The NCAA’s prohibition on multi-year Division I football scholarships has injured thousands of student-athletes by causing them to pay millions more in tuition when their Division I football scholarships are reduced or not renewed.”

In addition to claiming Chamorro would have benefited from the new multiyear scholarship rule, the complaint also states that the NCAA’s caps on scholarships deprived Chamorro of other potential scholarships from Division I teams and also caused his dismissal from CSU because of the limited amount of scholarships available.

“Despite the billions of dollars in revenue generated by Division I football programs, the NCAA rules artificially restrict football scholarships,” the complaint states.

On Sept. 24, the NCAA filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit, claiming that the complaint lacks an argument that relief could be granted from. So far there has been no ruling from the court on the dismissal and the latest action in the case was a motion from the NCAA to add an additional lawyer to their council.

The CSU Athletics department  had no comment on the lawsuit given it is a pending litigation between a former student-athlete and the NCAA.

Collegian Reporter Skyler Leonard can be reached at news@collegian.com or on Twitter @skyler_leonard.

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