ATLANTA -- A federal judge dismissed the last claims in a
defamation lawsuit filed two years ago by Jim Harrick and his son
after the basketball coaches were fired by the University of
U.S. District Judge Richard Story made his ruling Wednesday,
having already tossed out most of the suit in March. That decision
did away with all the Harricks' claims except one: that the
younger Harrick was defamed by the NCAA.
The father and son had contended the NCAA interfered with their
contracts with the UGA Athletic Association during the university's
investigation of possible NCAA violations.
The judge dismissed that claim and also ruled that the
organizations and people the Harricks sued are eligible to recover
legal costs from the Harricks. Jim Harrick and Jim Harrick Jr. have
30 days to appeal.
Harrick coached Georgia from 1999-03, and his son was an assistant. The two sued in February 2004, about a year after they were forced out of their jobs during an investigation of academic fraud in a course the younger Harrick taught to a class that included several basketball players.
The team was placed on probation after the investigation, and an
internal investigation found academic fraud was committed in the
course taught by Jim Harrick Jr.
The Harricks claimed they were defamed by university president
Michael Adams, athletic director Vince Dooley and other university