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Saturday, June 15, 2024 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

Fired Football Coach’s Appeal Rejected

DALLAS (CN) - The Texas Supreme Court denied former Texas Tech football coach Mike Leach's appeal of his wrongful termination lawsuit.

The court rejected Leach's appeal without comment.

Leach was fired in December 2009, after he was accused of mistreating team member Adam James, who was injured with a concussion.

(James is the son of Craig James, a former ESPN analyst and football star at Southern Methodist University and the New England Patriots. Craig James is now seeking the Republican nomination for Kay Bailey Hutchinson's U.S. Senate seat from Texas.)

Coach Leach denied the allegation and sued the school, claiming it denied him salary and bonuses. He filed a separate complaint against ESPN, which he accused of defaming him.

In January 2011, the Court of Appeals for the 7th District of Texas, in Amarillo, reversed the trial court's dismissal of Leach's due course of law claim for want of jurisdiction, and reversed a finding that the school waived its sovereign immunity from the breach of contract claim due to its conduct.

Eleven months later, the Texas Tech Board of Regents rejected a settlement offer from Leach. Leach wrote the regents that he was "willing to settle this case for simply what I was owed under the contract for working in 2009, which I completed except for one day. Even though I worked up to December 30, 2009, I never received my 2009 pay for guaranteed income, my 10 year bonus or incentive bonuses (for the games we won, the ranking, reaching a bowl, etc.)."

Days after making his settlement offer, Leach was hired as head football coach for Washington State University.

Follow @davejourno
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