Accuser gives testimony in Leach case

Mike Leach sat across from his accuser Saturday as Craig James gave

sworn testimony in the former coach’s lawsuit against Texas Tech.

James, whose complaint of mistreatment of his son led to

Leach’s firing, declined to comment as he walked into the

university’s administration building before his deposition.

Leach gave more than five hours of sworn testimony Friday.

When asked if he would be questioning James, he said, “I’m not

allowed to.”

Adam James, the son of the ESPN analyst and former NFL

player, also testified under oath later Saturday. Leach was not in

the room when the younger James gave his deposition. Father and son

each gave about four hours of testimony.

The university fired Leach Dec. 30, two days after

suspending him amid allegations he mistreated Adam James, who had a

concussion. Adam James contends his coach twice ordered him to

stand for hours while confined in a dark place during practice.

Leach has denied mistreating the receiver and suspects an

$800,000 bonus he was to have received Dec. 31 was the reason he

was fired. His lawsuit includes allegations of libel and slander

and breach of contract. Leach had just completed the first year of

a five-year, $12.7 milliion deal that came after months of

negotiations.

An attorney for Texas Tech, Dicky Grigg, told reporters

Saturday that Craig James testified that initiallly he only wanted

Leach to accept responsibility for the alleged mistreatment of his

son.

Grigg also said that Leach didn’t believe the receiver had a

concussion and that he “pressured” a trainer “to make Adam

practice.” That’s what led James to seek Leach’s dismissal, Grigg

said.

“He made no bones about it,” he said of James wanting Leach

fired.

Ted Liggett, one of Leach’s attorneys, said there is no

“evidence or facts” to those claims. Leach treated Adam James “as

if he had a concussion from the moment he discovered had a

concussion. So we categorically deny that.”

Liggett said Adam James testified that he thought being

placed in the shed on Dec. 17 “was funny.”

The younger James also testified that he “felt no threat of

physical harm, and he didn’t think that a coach should be fired for

the incident that took place on Dec. 17,” Liggett said.

Another of Leach’s lawyers, Paul Dobrowski, said Friday that

depositions from Texas Tech chancellor Kent Hance and a school

attorney bolstered the former coach’s contention that he didn’t

mistreat Adam James and that Leach had a right to sue the school

“without fear of retribution.”

Grigg said Friday that the university was “very pleased”

with the depositions given by Hance and a school attorney who

conducted the investigation into the allegations against Leach.