Former Arizona Wildcats head football coach Rich Rodriguez did nothing to help prevent the death of one of his players in 2016, according to a notice of claim filed against Rodriguez last week.
UA offensive lineman and Chandler High School graduate Zach Hemmila died in his sleep in August 2016. His death was later revealed to be a result of a combination of a painkiller and anti-anxiety medication.
On Dec. 28, a multi-million-dollar claim was filed against Rodriguez by Melissa Wilhelmsen, a former female administrative assistant who claimed Rodriguez created a hostile work environment and harassed her in several instances from 2011 to 2017.
The claim also alleges Rodriguez had a "demand for secrecy" that included "doing nothing about a player that needed help."
According to the claim, the evening before Hemmila's death, former UA director of on-campus recruiting Matt Dudek "had taken Zach to Rodriguez telling him that something was wrong with Zach and needed help. But Rodriguez did nothing simply saying, 'he'll be fine.' Rodriguez's knowledge of the extent of Zach's issues was another secret Melissa had to keep."
Rodriguez was fired by UA on Tuesday night following a USA TODAY report regarding workplace misconduct allegations against Rodriguez.