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Husker football players file lawsuit against Big Ten

Nebraska's AD put to rest all presumptions of playing outside the Big Ten Conference during the...
Nebraska's AD put to rest all presumptions of playing outside the Big Ten Conference during the Husker Nightly radio show on Thursday evening.(KOLN)
Published: Aug. 27, 2020 at 12:30 PM CDT
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) - Eight Husker football players filed a lawsuit in Lancaster County District Court on Thursday against the Big Ten Conference following the decision to cancel the 2020 football season.

The lawsuit seeks nominal damages for breach of contract and hopes to declare the decision invalid and award temporary injunctive relief.

In a statement, Mike Flood, the attorney for the eight players, states “the lawsuit isn’t about money or damages, it’s about real-life relief.”

Flood goes on to say the athletes followed all necessary guidelines, and adds the messaging from the Big Ten has not been consistent.

Players Garrett Snodgrass, Garrett Nelson, Ethan Piper, Noa Polagates, Alante Brown, Brant Banks, Brig Banks, and Jackson Hannah are all named as plaintiffs on the suit.

Thursday afternoon, Flood asked the court for expedited discovery, meaning the players want the judge to force the Big Ten conference to prove there was a vote to cancel the season, and show how each school voted within five days, instead of the normal 45.

“Courts are set up to find the truth, they operate under rules that are fair, and courts are transparent,” Flood said. “We’re hoping that with our lawsuit, we’ll be able to get the answers on behalf of our clients, student athletes at the University of Nebraska Lincoln.”

At Thursday’s motion hearing, Judge Susan Strong decided the Big Ten has until Monday at 5 p.m. to respond to the players’ request in writing.

Andrew Luger, a lawyer representing the Big Ten, said the players were stretching legal theories to make a flimsy claim.

“This is eight players, from one school, out of hundreds of players from 14 schools,” Luger said. “I understand their frustration, because I also played football, but someone had to make a decision.”

Luger went on to say the Big Ten wrote an open letter explaining the decision, therefore already fulfilling Flood’s clients’ requests.

Once the Big Ten’s written response is filed, Flood will have 24 hours to respond or move forward with legal action.

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