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Secretly Recorded: Lane Kiffin Lawsuit Centers Around Leaked Audio Of Coach Cussing Out Player

By CM Chaney · November 10, 2023

In brief…

  • Lawyers for Lane Kiffin and Ole Miss filed a motion to dismiss discrimination lawsuit brought by player DeSanto Rollins.
  • The motion argues Rollins failed to show evidence Kiffin discriminated against him based on race or mental health.
  • It states Kiffin had no special duty to interact with Rollins in a certain way as a coach.
  • The lawsuit stems from a recorded heated exchange between Kiffin and Rollins about a mental health break.
  • The court will now consider whether to grant the motion and dismiss the case.
Lawyers for Lane Kiffin and Ole Miss filed a motion to dismiss football player DeSanto Rollins' discrimination lawsuit against Kiffin, arguing he failed to demonstrate discrimination occurred.  Neon Tommy / Wikimedia

In the latest development in a lawsuit filed against Ole Miss head football coach Lane Kiffin, lawyers for Kiffin and the university filed a motion on Wednesday seeking to dismiss the case.

The lawsuit was originally brought by Ole Miss football player DeSanto Rollins in September, alleging discrimination based on race and mental health issues. Rollins is seeking $40 million in damages.

In their motion to dismiss, Kiffin’s lawyers argue that Rollins has failed to show evidence of discrimination or mistreatment by Kiffin. They state that Rollins has not demonstrated that Kiffin treated him differently than other players in similar situations, or that any differential treatment was motivated by discriminatory intent related to Rollins’ race or gender.

The motion points out that Rollins made comparisons in his lawsuit to the treatment of “a white football player,” “white female softball players” and “female volleyball players.”

However, the lawyers contend that Kiffin did not coach those other athletes and thus could not have discriminated against Rollins in comparison to them.

The motion also asserts that Kiffin had no legal duty to manage his roster or interact with players in a certain way. It states that coaching decisions are largely discretionary, and Kiffin was within his rights to make decisions about Rollins’ position and playing time.

Additionally, the lawyers argue that Rollins cannot seek damages for emotional distress or reputational harm for his claims under Title VI, Title IX and the Rehabilitation Act. The motion seeks to have those claims dismissed on that basis.

Rollins remains on scholarship at Ole Miss. He alleges that Kiffin attempted to push him to transfer after the 2022 season.

The lawsuit centers around a heated exchange between Rollins and Kiffin regarding Rollins taking a mental health break, which Rollins recorded secretly and was released on Thursday.

You can listen to the exchange below. Warning: Contains strong language.

Representatives for Ole Miss and Kiffin declined requests for comment on the motion. The court will now consider whether to grant the motion and dismiss the lawsuit.