This past summer was a rough one for Kirk Ferentz and the Iowa Hawkeyes as the protests against racial injustice resulted in some stunning revelations about alleged racial biases in the program.
Now, a group of African-American former players are seeking the firing of Ferentz, along with other top figures in the program, as part of a lawsuit against Iowa. Per the report, eight ex-Iowa players are seeking $20 million, as well as the firing of Ferentz, athletic director Gary Barta and assistant coach Brian Ferentz over alleged racial discrimination during their careers.
Specific details of the discrimination were not stated in the report, but the group of players has retained the services of a civil right attorney, and sent a 21-page letter to the university addressing their grievances. Per the report, the letter gives the school until Monday, October 19 to meet their demands before they get litigious.
“According to the letter, if the demands are not met to the former athletes’ satisfaction by Monday, Oct. 19, the athletes were prepared to pursue a lawsuit ‘to ensure they are rightfully compensated for their emotional, mental and bodily damages and that Iowa is appropriately held accountable for its unlawful, discriminatory conduct.'”
However, the University of Iowa appears to have already issued their answer. University of Iowa general counsel Carroll Reasoner reportedly replied, “We respectfully decline your monetary and personnel demands” and stated that the school has previously taken steps to address the problems.
This past summer, longtime strength and conditioning coach Chris Doyle was fired when racial allegations against him were made public.
Dozens of former Iowa players have since come forward with their own stories of discrimination at Iowa.
Kirk Ferentz and the top Iowa brass don’t appear to be getting forced out anytime soon. But things are definitely getting more contentious.