Myles Powell, a former guard for the Seton Hall men’s basketball team, has sued Seton Hall University, coach Kevin Willard, and a staff member for allegedly failing to diagnose a knee injury during his senior year.
The lawsuit filed on Wednesday in New Jersey Superior Court in Essex County charges, the university, Willard, and Director of Sports Medicine Tony Testa with negligence, breach of contract, and breach of fiduciary duty causing severe permanent injury including physical pain, emotional distress, and monetary damages, as per the Associated
The suit also refers to Testa as an M.D. and the team’s physician, but the university’s website does not say he holds a medical degree and is not the team’s physician. His role, as stated on the university athletics department’s website, reads, “He coordinates and provides medical services for all student-athletes and works directly with the men's basketball and men's and women's golf teams.”
The injury Powell’s lawsuit referred to occurred in the second game of the 2019-20 season against Stony Brook University, where Powell was allegedly told by Testa that the injury was only in his ankle and that he could continue to play without worsening his condition, as per USA Today’s Nicholas Katzban.
The suit claimed that Willard was made aware of what Testa had said to Powell, but Willard allowed Powell to continue playing despite the health risk. Powell allegedly told the Seton Hall staff throughout the 2019-20
season that he could feel pain growing in his leg, but he claimed Testa waved it off as a bruised bone in his knee and injected Powell’s knee with medication to manage the pain.
Powell asserts that the meniscus injury should have been enough to keep him out for the entire season yet played due to Willard and Testa’s advice.
“Seton Hall University has always and continues to put the health and safety of our students first,” a Seton Hall statement read. “We are aware of the matter, but are unable to comment on pending litigation.”
Powell reached 2,000 career points for the Pirates during the 2019-20 season and was named Big East Player of the Year, helping lead Seton Hall to their first Big East regular season title since 1993. He averaged 21 points per game on 40% shooting despite allegedly suffering from this injury for the majority of the 2019-20 season.