Illinois Lineman Says Beckman Mishandled Knee Injury

May 11, 2015
Illinois offensive linesman Simon Cvijanovic (68) blocks Western Michigan defensive end Deauntay Legrier (36) while Illinois quarterback Nathan Scheelhaase (2) looks to pass during the second half of an NCAA college football game on Saturday, Sept. 2

Illinois offensive linesman Simon Cvijanovic (68) blocks Western Michigan defensive end Deauntay Legrier (36) while Illinois quarterback Nathan Scheelhaase (2) looks to pass during the second half of an NCAA college football game on Saturday, Sept. 24, 2011, in Champaign, Ill.

(AP Photo/Seth Perlman)

A former member of the Illinois football team who was injured last season has criticized coach Tim Beckman's handling of his injury.

Offensive lineman Simon Cvijanovic wrote a series of Twitter posts Sunday accusing Beckman and some staff members of not offering proper treatment for a torn meniscus in his knee.

The senior also said Beckman told him his knee injury was not a big problem.
 
In a statement, Beckman said Cvijanovic left the team and withdrew from the university last fall.

Beckman said Cvijanovic has been given medical care since he returned to school in the spring.

Cvijanovic was a starting lineman. He missed the last four games of the season after injuring himself against Ohio State on Nov. 1.

(UPDATE 5:00 PM) Illinois athletic director Mike Thomas says he backs football coach Tim Beckman following allegations by a former player that his injuries were mishandled.

Thomas says he still plans a full review of the claims made by Cvijanovic. Thomas says he believes Beckman  put “the welfare of this young man above everything else.''

Cvijanovic complained in a series of Twitter messages Sunday that he had been pressured to play when injured last season and that the school hadn't fully informed him of the extent of an earlier knee surgery.

Cvijanovic said Monday he was considering legal action.

Thomas said the university review will begin soon but isn't sure how long it will take or who will be interviewed.

Story source: AP