Rutgers Whistleblower Files Lawsuit Against University in Mike Rice Case

Tim KeeneyContributor IApril 5, 2013

NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 12:  Head coach Mike Rice of the Rutgers Scarlet Knights directs his players in the first half against the DePaul Blue Demons at Madison Square Garden on March 12, 2013 in New York City.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Elsa/Getty Images

Eric Murdock, the former Rutgers employee who released the Mike Rice video, is suing the university for failing to properly act on his warnings of the coach's outrageous treatment of players back in July.

The news comes from Yahoo! Sports' Katie Zezima:

A former Rutgers University employee who made public the video that led to the basketball coach's dismissal and athletic director's resignation has filed a whistleblower lawsuit against the university.

Eric Murdock filed the lawsuit Friday in state court, claiming the university violated the state's employee protection act and his contract.

Murdock, the former director of player of development for Rutgers, was let go by the team in July after he wrote a letter to the university accentuating his concern with Rice’s “unlawful conduct.” While he also skipped the coach’s youth basketball camp, he believes he was ultimately fired because of that “whistleblowing.”

No other course of action was taken at that time.

In November, Murdock revealed the video of Rice to the university, which showed the coach throwing balls at players, pushing them and yelling vulgar obscenities at them.

Rice was suspended for three games and fined $50,000, but that was the extent of the punishment.

Earlier this week, when the video was released to the public, the national outrage not only led to the firing of Rice, but to the resignation of athletic director Tim Pernetti, both of whom are named as defendants in Murdock’s lawsuit.

Murdock is claiming that Rice, Pernetti and school administrators failed to take the correct steps in assuring the safety of players who were being both physically and verbally abused. Not only does that violate anti-bullying university laws, but New Jersey state laws as well.

According to the report, the "lawsuit accuses the university of six counts of wrongdoing, including breach of contract and a hostile work environment."