Former TCU wide receiver Kolby Listenbee is suing TCU and the Big 12 Conference for a pattern of abuse and harassment in 2015.
Listenbee, who was injured against SMU during his senior season in 2015, alleges that TCU head coach Gary Patterson, then-offensive coordinator Doug Meacham and other coaches “continuously pressured, humiliated, and harassed Listenbee shortly after his injury diagnosis in an effort to force Listenbee to return to play quickly in their quest for a national football championship.”
TCU declined to comment on the lawsuit besides providing a released statement.
“As a practice, Texas Christian University does not comment on the specifics of pending litigation. However, TCU takes tremendous pride in its long-standing tradition of excellence in providing a positive experience for its student-athletes, especially in the areas of care, prevention and rehabilitation of athletic injuries.”
The lawsuit claims Listenbee suffered from osteitis pubis, an inflammation of the cartilage between the two bones in the pelvis, after falling awkwardly during a touchdown catch on Sept. 19, 2015.
He missed the next two games before being cleared to play, despite still being in pain, the lawsuit reads. He was given corticosteroid shots -- a treatment the NCAA Sports Medicine Handbook says should be used “only after more conservative treatments,” according to the lawsuit.
Listenbee alleges that Patterson accused him of “faking” the injury and embarrassing him in front of his teammates. He accuses members of the coaching staff of threatening to tell NFL scouts he wasn’t tough enough for the professional level.
In one instance, Patterson told Listenbee he would be dismissed from the football team and from the university if TCU lost to Texas two weeks after the injury.
Listenbee was selected in the sixth round of the 2016 draft by the Buffalo Bills, but was released a year later without playing in a game.
Listenbee includes the Big 12 Conference in the lawsuit, claiming both TCU and the conference “lack policies, procedures, and protocols regarding the medical clearance to return to play as it relates to orthopedic injuries such as osteitis pubis.”
The lawsuit asks for at least $1 million in damages.