UofL BASKETBALL | Rick Pitino Files Answer to UofL's Counterclaim

01/04/2018 02:35 PM

On December 13, 2017, the University of Louisville filed a lawsuit against former men’s basketball head coach Rick Pitino. That suit was seeking monetary damages from NCAA games that could be vacated, along with the Final Fours and 2013 National Title.

The university’s suit, was a counter-suit to the lawsuit Pitino filed against Louisville on November 30, 2017 in which Pitino alleged that his firing was a breach of contract and he was seeking “damages equal to the full unpaid balance of his contract, consistent with the terms of the contract’s liquidated damages clause.”

The answer to the counterclaim, filed in federal court on January 3, states that Pitino withdrew his appeal to the NCAA Committee on Infractions after his firing because, “ULAA (University of Louisville Athletics Association) made the issues in that appeal moot.”

An answer filing to a counterclaim is standard legal procedure.

It continues by saying, “Coach Pitino lacks knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegations contained in the counterclaim, and thus, denies those allegations.”

Further defenses include, “ULAA’s counterclaims are barred, in whole or in part, by the unclean hands doctrine.”

The ninth defense listed in the answer says, “If ULAA suffered any injury, which Coach Pitino denies, that injury resulted in whole or in part from ULAA’s negligent or intentional actions.”

The tenth defense echos the one prior, “If ULAA suffered any injury, which Coach Pitino denies, that injury resulted in whole or in part from the negligent or intentional actions of third parties not within Coach Pitino’s control.”

The thirteenth defense, Pitino requests money for damages stating, “If Coach Pitino damaged ULAA, which he denies, he is entitled to an offset for damages that ULAA caused him.”

The fourteenth defense, says that Pitino followed his contractual obligations (which Louisville denies), “At all time, Coach Pitino acted reasonable, in good faith and consistent with his contractual obligations.”

He also reserved the right to amend his answer, or to assert additional defenses to ULAA’s counterclaims, as facts become available through discovery.

The request for additional relief in the answer is as followed:

1. Dismissal of ULAA’s counterclaims
2. In the alternative, judgement in his favor on ULAA’s counterclaims
3. Recovery of all litigation costs allowed by law
4. All other relief to which he is entitled

Pitino’s lawsuit claims he is owed $4.3 million per year over the next nine years. The university maintains it doesn’t owe him any of the remaining money.

The ULAA Board voted to fire Rick Pitino on October 16, 2017 after he was placed on administrative leave on September 27. He was placed on leave after Louisville was found to be one of several schools involved in an FBI probe into a college basketball “pay for play” scheme on September 26.

Spectrum News will continue to follow this news as it develops.

Lyndsey Gough

Lyndsey is a Video Journalist for Spectrum News. You can catch Lyndsey’s work on Sports Night, the only nightly show dedicated to covering everything from high school to college sports in Kentucky. She loves covering all sports but it’s the personal stories that really stand out to Lyndsey, like the story of a community coming together to remember high school track start Trinity Gay who was killed. Lyndsey came to Spectrum News from WBKO in Bowling Green where she was an Anchor, Reporter and Producer covering news and sports. She’s a lifelong Kentuckian and a graduate of UK. Sports Night airs at 6:30 and 10:30 weeknights on Spectrum News. If you have a story idea for Lyndsey email her at Lyndsey.gough@charter.com.

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