Another Rhabdo 13 update

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Rhabdo documents released

The Des Moines Register got its hands on hundreds of emails and documents from the Iowa Sport Information department regarding the Rhabdo 13 through the Freedom of Information Act. They have published all the emails, so you can read through them if you want. The vast majority of it is quite bland. About half of the emails are just back-and-forths trying to figure out the correct wording for the multiple press releases, including Kirk Ferentz's official statement, done around the time of the hospitalizations. The other half is mostly shooting done requests for information from various media outlets including ESPN's Pat Forde and some guy from the Wall Street Journal. There's also an email from a parent concerned about the school work his son would miss while in the hospital. They are student-athletes after all.

BHGP keyed in on the fact that at least one person at Iowa was concerned about the lack of content in the initial release. Tysen Kendig was worried that the information-less release would lead to more questions and "could lead to public health concerns to a small degree, but certainly to rampant and unfounded speculation." Kendig was overruled and the release was sent out and *gasp* Kendig's prediction of rampant and unfounded speculation came true.

Pretty much everyone agrees that Iowa could have handled the communication piece of this incident better. From the press releases to the press conference without Barta and Ferentz...poor decisions were made. Even U of I President Sally Mason agrees as she told the Daily Iowan when asked about the Rhabdo 13 "I think that's one area that we have learned our hospital has to be talking to Tyson Kendig, our strategy communications vice pres, our athletics department has to be talking to Tyson and that way we can coordinate our message so that we're we at least know where we all are."

Players/families had to pay for part of hospital stay

In other news, the Gazette has a story about student-athletes covering the expense for sports-related injuries. Typically the student/family will be responsible up to the point that their insurance will cover it. After that, the Athletic Department foots the bill. That was the case for the Rhabdo 13. Specific numbers weren't given for this case, but the UI Hospital did say that the average treatment for a case of rhabdomyolysis costs around $8,000. It's hard to say how much insurance would have covered for each player, but it's probably safe to say that this cost the Athletic Department tens of thousands of dollars.

Former Hawkeyes at the NFL Combine are asked about Rhabdo

And in other, other news, unsurprisingly the former Hawkeyes at the NFL Combine are being asked about their thoughts on the rhabdo situation. Like the previous former players who have come out and spoke before, Ryan Donahue, Julian Vandervelde, and Allen Reisner all voiced their support for Kirk Ferentz, Chris Doyle, and the super-squat workout. A good quote from Donahue (who visited the hospitalized players on the Tuesday after they were admitted): "I think that was evidenced when all the past players came out and said, coach Doyle is the best in the business, we wouldn't be where we are without coach Doyle and the strength and conditioning program, so we back him 100 percent."
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