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Wulff, WSU sued by former Cougars football player

A 23-year-old former reserve offensive lineman at Washington State University has sued the university and former football coach Paul Wulff, alleging he suffered three concussions while participating in football activities at the school, including “helmet-less practices,” the suit states.

Instead of following his dreams of playing NFL football, or even graduating from college, Timothy Hodgdon suffers from symptoms of “concussive traumatic brain injury,” his attorneys said Friday. He lives with his mother in San Francisco, the same city where Wulff now works as an offensive assistant for the NFL’s 49ers after being fired by WSU in November 2011.

Hodgdon dropped out of WSU in 2011 after losing his scholarship and his ability to complete his academic studies due to his brain injury, the suit states. He suffers from short-term and long-term memory loss as a result of his concussions, one of his attorneys, Ann Deutscher of Kent, said.

Hodgdon’s lawsuit was filed Wednesday in Thurston County Superior Court. It names the state of Washington, WSU, WSU athletics and Wulff as defendants.

Wulff could not be reached for comment through the 49ers’ media relations office. WSU’s executive director of university communications, Kathy Barnard, emailed a response to the lawsuit Friday afternoon.

“We have not received the full details of the situation that has led to this particular suit,” Barnard stated. “However, the health and safety of our student athletes is of paramount importance, and we take these matters very seriously.”

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