Pay the man, already. It’s been eight years since Leach coached at Texas Tech, but hey’s still fighting for his final pay check. For good reason too. Actually, 2.5 million good reasons.
Back in June, Leach made headlines when he went on KTCK The Ticket out of Dallas and pointed out that he still had not been paid his salary for the job he did in 2009. He brought it up once again in his press conference this week.
“You’re talking about an institution that hasn’t paid me for 2009,” Leach said. “We won nine games in 2009 and they haven’t won nine since. Yeah, are there crooks there? Yeah.
“Like felons, they oughta put them in jail.
“Think about it, think about it in the case of Texas Tech. You’ve got schools that have actually had murders, you’ve got schools that have had rapes and sexual assaults, you’ve got schools that have cheated and fixed grades, you’ve got schools that have bought players. There’s only one school in the nation that’s shameful enough to have not paid their head coach. Only one. And that’s Texas Tech.”
Now, a new social campaign is aiming to get coach Leach paid. The hashtag #paycoachleach is taking root on social media, and there is even a rally planned to held on 10:00 am on Saturday near the Red Raiders stadium. Coach Leach confirmed as much from his own Twitter.
— Mike Leach (@Coach_Leach) October 20, 2017
There’s even a website.
— Mike Leach (@Coach_Leach) October 20, 2017
So, why is this an issue now? Why haven’t the courts settled this. The answer, frankly, is disgusting. Coach Leach did file a lawsuit, but the courts found has no legal recourse to get paid thanks to a loop-hole that basically tells Leach to go pound sand because Texas Tech is above the law.
I’m not making this up. I wish I were. Right or wrong, if Texas Tech owes the money or not, that’s no way to settle it. If they don’t owe the money, let a judge tell Leach as much. But to exercise “sovereign immunity” is basically saying, ya we owe you, but we don’t like you so screw off.
Texas Tech University falls under the State of Texas as a state school, and therefore is protected by sovereign immunity. In order to successfully sue the state, you basically have to ask for permission to do so. Seriously. So Mike Leach has to ask the state for permission to sue the state for $2.5 million.
“Texas Tech stands alone as far as just being sleazy as far as not paying their head coach,” Leach said. “And they want to hide behind some nuance in the law — we’re the sovereign. How is your role as a sovereign — how are you operating in your role as a sovereign by not paying a contract that you signed? That you drew up and you signed?”
It’s no secret that there is bad blood between Leach and the school. Leach didn’t play along with the “good ol’ boy” attitude of doing things and butted heads with former administration at Tech. Heck, he actively searched for new jobs and made it clear that he didn’t want to be at Tech. However, that is not an excuse for not paying a man for what he is owed.
The school claims he was fired for cause after forcing Adam James — son of former and now shamed, ESPN personality Craig James — to sit in a dark room during practice as he suffered from a concussion. Leach was fired by the school the day before he was due a big bonus, but it later came out that James’ claims were largely a which hunt and the school jumped on it as an excuse to get rid of coach Leach.
Leach has more people on his side than you may think too. A great deal of the Red Raider fan base are grateful to Leach for his time in Lubbock, and recognize the job he did for him.
At this point, Texas Tech needs to find a way out of this mess and get a deal done with Leach. It’s embarrassing for the school that this is still ongoing, and frankly, it’s a blight on a school for no apparent reason. Because even the most staunch Red Raider supporter has to see that hiding behind sovereign immunity should be a giant red flag to any potential coach, of any sport, or really any employee of any kind looking to be hired at Texas Tech. If they’ve done it once, they can always do it again.
It’s not like former coach Tommy Tuberville is out there singing Texas Tech’s praises, either. He straight up liked Lubbock to Iraq and Serbia. Coach Leach compared Texas Tech to a bit different country back in June, but I’m not sure it paints any better of a picture.
“Other states don’t do that,” coach Leach said, “because that’s how North Korea does business.”