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Stafon Johnson Files Suit Against USC

1/24/2011 4:36 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF

Former USC running back Stafon Johnson has filed a lawsuit against USC over a weightlifting accident that almost killed him -- claiming his USC weightlifting coach recklessly struck the bench press bar that crushed his neck.

Stafon Johnson Sues USC
Johnson claims he was bench pressing 275 pounds in the USC weight room in Sept. 2009 -- part of the required football regimen -- when Jamie Yanchar, an assistant strength and conditioning coach for the football team, was "spotting" him.

While Johnson attempted to grasp the bar on his own, Yanchar allegedly struck the bar, knocking it off balance and slipping from Johnson's hands. The bar fell on to his neck causing severe injury and ending his college football career.

According to the suit, filed today in L.A. County Superior Court, Yanchar's "negligent, careless and reckless" action in striking the bar "substantially increased the risk inherent in Mr. Johnson's bench pressing."

Johnson -- who eventually signed with an NFL team -- is suing for unspecified damages including loss of future earnings.

UPDATE: A rep from USC released a statementt saying, "USC firmly believes it was not at fault in Stafon Johnson's unfortunate weightlifting accident.  We are sorry that Stafon was injured."

The statement continues, "USC and the entire Trojan Family have been exceptionally supportive of Stafon from the minute the accident occurred.  We are disappointed to learn that Stafon has decided to file a lawsuit against USC."

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25 COMMENTS

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16.

Greg H.    

If he needs a spotter for 275 he don't belong in the NFL.

1307 days ago
17.

Sad-Sad    

Tool bag was released from the Tennessee Titans and is craving money and wants the easiest way to get it! Sue sue sue. Get a real job you moron..

1307 days ago
18.

Brad    

What a loser. I hope failure upon him.

1307 days ago
19.

Hisjules    

test

1307 days ago
20.

Carl    

Even if what he says is true, it was an accident. I highly doubt that it would rise to the level of negligence, and that is what he'll have to prove to win.

1307 days ago
21.

Throwback kid    

Maybe he dropped the bar on himself because the spotter t bagged him!

1307 days ago
22.

Sofujid    

Only those in attendance know what happened, if coach was at fault, break him off. If not-damn, just need to be careful homie.

1307 days ago
23.

john wayne gacy    


sure; get an incredibly FREE education, chose to lift more than you can handle by CHOICE, do not get drafted, get hurt as a walk on to a pro team, with the realization that your entire future as a professional athlete is completely over. truth be told, the people close to him, relied heavily for a payday that will NEVER come. mama & yo baby's mama need to get paid. GET A JOB with the FREE degree that they GAVE you by pushing you through the collegiate system to play ball .......

1306 days ago
24.

Lee    

look on youtube the video is on there and it looks like the spotter let go and then the kid just dropped it. I don't see how this at all could be the spotters fault.

1305 days ago
25.

scott    

I wonder...was he going to actually graduate from USC or was he only going to play football and try to make it big? I say USC lets him finish his education...yeah right...like he would have graduated anyway.

1294 days ago
Previous 15 Comments | 1 | 2

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