Labor & Employment Law
New fallout for Rutgers over fired coach as ex-employee files whistleblower suit
Posted Apr 8, 2013 2:27 PM CDT
By Martha Neil
A former employee filed a whistleblower suit against Rutgers University in state court in New Jersey on Friday, contending that he suffered retaliation for complaining about mistreatment of basketball players.
Eric Murdock, who made public a video that led to the recent firing of the basketball coach, followed by the resignation of the athletic director, says he complained in July about the coach and provided video in November that showed Mike Rice pushing and berating players, the Associated Press reports.
Murdock, who played in the NBA almost a decade, was director of player of development for the Rutgers program, but his contract wasn't renewed.
He alleges in his suit that the university violated his contract, the state's employee protection statute and an anti-bullying policy that was put in place after the suicide of Tyler Clementi in treating him as he alleges it did. It asserts claims including breach of contract and creating a hostile work environment.
"Efforts to get Rutgers to address their problems were ignored for months,” Murdock said at a news conference. “Instead, I was removed from my position. That is wrong and why I filed a lawsuit.”
When asked for comment, Rutgers president Robert L. Barchi said: “It is an ongoing legal situation, and it is something that I simply cannot comment on.”
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