8 Legal Issues Collegiate Athletics 1 (2006-2007)

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                            LEGAL IssES N                                 Route To: /ll



COLLEGIATE ATHLETICS
                 A Report of Court Decisions, Legislation and Regulations Affecting Collegiate Athletics

                                   Coach's Retaliation Complaint Gets


NCAA Penalizes
University  of Iowa  for
Major  Violations  in
Men's  Swimming......2

Major  Violations  Lead to
Penalties for University
of Kansas.............. 3

James  Madison
University's  Decision  to
Cut  Athletic Teams:   A
Farce  or Tragedy?......4

North  Dakota   Gets
Temporary Reprieve
on  Fighting Sioux
Nickname............6

Conference   Calendar..  .9

News   In Brief......9

Personnel   Moves......12


Mixed Ruling from Federal Judge


    In a mixed ruling on a summary
judgment motion, a California federal
judge has dismissed and extended
a former coach's claim that he was
retaliated against because of his whistle
blowing activities.
    The court dismissed the retaliation
claim as it related to alleged Title
IX  violations, finding insufficient
evidence for the claim. However, the
plaintiff's retaliation claim as it related
to accounting mismanagement survived
the summary judgment motion because
he presented evidence of a causal link
between his complaints regarding fiscal
mismanagement  and the end of his
employment.
    David Wells began his coaching
career at Humbolt State University
(HSU)in 1980. While employedatHSU,
he coached a combination of men's and
women's  cross-country and track and


field events, according to the court. His
employment was governed by limited-
term contracts. Usually, the contract was
for a one-year term, but sometimes the
term was two or three years. For over
two decades, after each term expired, the
plaintiff's contract would be renewed
for another set term.
   In late 1998 or early 1999, the
plaintiffbecame concerned about HSU's
compliance with Title IX. He approached
Mike Swan, who was then the athletics
director, and discussed his concerns,
specifically, the inequality between the
funding of men's and women's sports.
Swan was  non-responsive, according
to the court. The plaintiff then met
with John Costello, who was the Dean
of the College of Professional Studies,
to discuss his Title IX concerns. Dean
Costello referred the plaintiff back to
                 See WELLS on page 7


  State Appeals Court Applies 'Prudent

Person Standard of Care' to Golf Case


    A California state appeals court has
reversed a trial court after concluding
that it should have applied the
prudent person standard of care when
determining whether a middle school
golf coach and the school district
that employed him were liable for an
accident that occurred during a P.E.
class. That trial court had applied the
Knight/Kahn limited duty of care,
which is a more forgiving standard.
    The setting for the accident was a
7th grade P.E. class being taught in the
Long Beach Unified School District.
The plaintiff, Jane Hemady, was a 12-


year-old student at the time. Hemady
was standing in line waiting her turn to
swing her golf club when the student in
front of her unexpectedly took another
swing, hitting her in the mouth.
   The plaintiffsued, seeking damages
for personal injuries from the school
district and the instructor, Brian Feely.
In her complaint, she alleged that Feely
had failed to properly supervise the class
and was purposefully distracted at the
time of the accident.
   Traditionally, the applicable
standard of care for such litigation has
               See HEMADY on page 8


Digitized from Best Copy Available


Volume 8, Issue 2


December 2006

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