Monday, October 17, 2005

Sportslaw: Coach Mike Price settles with S.I.

From my good friend Mark Wahlstrom's blog, found here:

"In a case closely watched here on The Settlement Channel football coach Mike Price today announced the settlement of his defamation case against Time, Inc, and it's Sports Illustrated magazine. A summary of the case is available here at, which outlines some of the facts of the case.

Our particular interest was in the ruling back in August of this year that Sports Illustrated was going to have to divulge their "confidential source" so that Coach Price's attorney would have the ability to depose her, as that confidential information was at the heart of the allegations of Price's impropriety at a topless club, which eventually led to his dismissal by the University of Alabama.

Price has contended all along that while he did drink to excess that day, and he would certainly like to have that day to do over, that the Sports illustrated article was rushed to publication, facts were omitted, false items inserted as fact, and all of it done under the cloak of anonymity of the source of the allegations. As many know Coach Price eventually landed a job at University of Texas at El Paso, or UTEP, and is now coaching there, albeit at a much lower salary then what he stood to earn at Alabama.

While it would have been intriguing to see how the first amendment issue was going to turn out, and if Sports Illustrated would be forced to divulge their source, Coach Price declared himself as "very happy" with the amount of the settlement. Obviously, Time, Inc. took stock of their position legally on this, realized they might have to admit the "source" was fictional, or at least not what they alleged, and that the potential of a massive verdict was likely."

Good work Mark!

I'll be on Civil Action Radio next month at the MTMP conference in Vegas.