On April 19, 2011, former University of Utah football standout Eric Weddle filed a $5 million dollar lawsuit against drug maker Bayer AG and magazine publisher Athlon Sports. In his 15 page complaint, Weddle alleged that the two defendants improperly used an unauthorised image of him in connection with a national Alka-Seltzer/Athlon Sports marketing campaign.
Part of this national marketing campaign was to place Weddle promotional display boxes of Bayer’s Alka-Seltzer antacid boxes throughout the United States at various Walmarts, Walgreens, CVSs, and local pharmacies. Additionally, the defendants used the same image to advertise and promote Athlon Sports’ college football preview magazine.
The image used for the national marketing campaign was of Weddle during his college football playing days. Though the campaign never identified the name Weddle throughout any ads, it was clear from the photo in question, that the image used was of Weddle, bearing the number 32 worn during his collegiate playing days.
Weddle claims the defendants were at no time authorised to use his image for commercial purposes and certainly not for this national marketing campaign. Weddle’s federal complaint was filed in the U.S. District Court, Southern District of California, Case NO. 11-CC-0817H.
Weddle is currently a DB for the San Diego Charges, a spokesperson for the Church of Latter-day Saints, and an active community leader.