Reggie Barlow served as Alabama State University's head football coach for eight years. Then, only weeks into a new three-year deal, which included a significant raise, he was asked to resign, with an offer of six weeks severance pay. After declining this offer, the university's Board of Trustees allegedly stopped payment and rescinded his contract.
As a result, Barlow filed a lawsuit, citing breach of contract, fraud, wrongful termination and negligent employment and supervision, according to local Fox News affiliate WBRC. Barlow, who himself graduated from Alabama State, told the source that the Board of Trustees at his alma mater would habitually overstep its boundaries and make promises it could not or had no intention of keeping, which prevented him from performing his role.
"Frankly, the wrongful termination portion of this lawsuit is secondary to a number of other issues taking place at that university," Barlow's attorney, Donald Jackson told the media. "ASU's embarrassing inability to run an athletic department prevented my client from doing his job. And then, after signing him to a valid, enforceable contract, it terminated him without cause."
Jackson goes on to explain that Barlow could have capitalized on a number of other opportunities had his employer been more forthcoming and allowed him to seek alternative employment. But, because of the renewed contract, Barlow passed on a number of other potentially lucrative offers.
Alabama State University conforms to the structure of many public universities, where trustees have final say on contract disputes and hiring decisions. Therefore, Barlow's suit named board chairman Locy Baker, trustee Herbert Young and athletic director Melvin Hines personally, alleging the three committed fraud by leading Barlow to believe that he had three years of employment secured.
If you or a loved one in the Missouri area has had a similar experience, contact The Meyers Law Firm for wrongful termination lawyers that can fight for the compensation you may be owed.