March 7, 2005
Seattle - A settlement has been reached between the University of Washington and the NCAA and former Washington football coach Rick Neuheisel regarding his lawsuits against the UW and the NCAA.
The settlement agreement provides for a payment to Neuheisel of $3.0 million, of which $2.5 million will be paid by the NCAA and $500,000 by the University. The University also agreed not to seek repayment of a $1.5 million loan made by the University to Neuheisel in 2002 as part of his compensation package. The University's portion of the settlement will be paid out of the Department of Intercollegiate Athletics operating reserve fund.
After six weeks of trial in King County Superior Court, the presentation of evidence by all parties was completed on Wednesday. Closing arguments had been scheduled to begin this morning.
"In June 2003, the University made the decision to terminate its head football coach in accordance with the terms of his contract," according to the University's lead counsel in the case, Lou Peterson. "The University presented the grounds for that decision in court and is confident of its position. However, during the final days of trial, events outside the University's control raised the serious threat of a mistrial or reversal. The University is pleased that the NCAA assumed responsibility to help resolve the difficult situation that had developed around changes in its procedural rules.
"The University expresses its appreciation to the jurors, who have devoted their time and attention to hearing this case," said Peterson. "They are a critical component of our system of justice."