Former Baylor Coach Peeved at University


     WACO, Texas (CN) – Fired Baylor football coach Art Briles blasted his former employer in a court filing Thursday, accusing its attorneys of “taking advantage of a direct conflict of interest” in a former student’s lawsuit against both Briles and the school.
     In a four-page emergency motion for substitution of counsel, Briles says he provided the school’s attorneys with “extensive personal information” related to a negligence and gender discrimination lawsuit filed by former student Jasmin Hernandez in federal court in March.
     Hernandez claims former football player Tevin Elliott raped her at a party in 2012 and that officials gave her withdrawal forms when she asked for psychological and academic counseling. She also said Briles never responded to her parents’ phone calls about the rape.
     Briles’s Thursday motion also seeks to clarify Baylor’s request for an extension of time to answer the complaint, which Baylor filed last week.
     Briles says Baylor’s request “implied to the court that all defendants agreed and requested an extension of time” without informing or conferring with him beforehand.
     Briles also alleges that Baylor scheduled a mediation with Hernandez for Friday without notifying him, using the statements and personal information he gave the school for this litigation to support firing him.
     “It is also clear that any joint representation of Baylor University and Coach Briles before [and] after his termination resulted in liability to Coach Briles for damages under Texas statutory and common law for breach of contract, fraud, libel and slander, misrepresentation, breach of fiduciary duty, negligence and intentional infliction of emotional distress, among others,” the motion states.
     Briles is represented in the motion by Ernest H. Cannon in Stephenville and Janet Hansen in Houston.
     The mounting accusations of rape by football players led Baylor’s trustees to order an external review by Philadelphia law firm Pepper Hamilton last year.
     The findings were damning, as Pepper Hamilton accused administrators of “directly discouraging” women from reporting sexual assaults and in one case retaliated against a woman for it.
     In response, Baylor trustees demoted Baylor President Ken Starr to chancellor in May. Starr then resigned as chancellor “as a matter of conscience,” but stayed on as a Baylor Law School faculty member.
     Athletic director McCaw was suspended indefinitely, and resigned days later.
     Briles was suspended with intent to terminate. He is reportedly negotiating a buyout with the school over the remaining years on his contract, which was supposed to run until 2023 according to CBSSports.
     Briles’s filing comes one day after three more former Baylor students sued the school for indifference to their rape reports. One of the plaintiffs alleges she was raped by a former football player in 2014 at a school-owned residence.
     Once a doormat in the Big 12 Conference, Baylor became a national championship contender under Briles’s tenure as head coach from 2008 to 2016.

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