Chavis files suit against LSU, Texas A&M; LSU responds
COLLEGE STATION, Texas - Former LSU football assistant coach John Chavis filed suit Friday against both LSU and Texas A&M, where he's coaching now, over a contract dispute.
At issue is a $400,000 buyout clause in Chavis's LSU contract. Chavis asked in his suit for a court to determine if he does owe the buyout and if Texas A&M has to pay it.
Chavis left LSU for a coaching position at Texas shortly after the Tigers lost their bowl game in December. Chavis claims in his suit that LSU athletic director Joe Alleva demanded he pay the university $400,000 in early January. Chavis said he then submitted a 30-day notice to end his contract without cause.
If Chavis's last day was the day he submitted his notice, then according to his contract Chavis would owe his buyout. If it was the end of the 30-day period, it falls outside the buyout period and Chavis claims he owes nothing.
The suit also claimed Chavis's new contract with the Aggies would put them on the hook to pay any amount leftover from his time at LSU. The suit says Texas A&M will not, however, because they believe Chavis owes nothing.
Attorney Bill Youngkin represents Chavis and filed the suit in the 272nd District Court in Brazos County. LSU filed a counter-suit in response, according to Youngkin.
Late Friday, LSU posted a response online.
"The state of Texas is not a proper venue to decide a contractual dispute between Louisiana State University and one of its former coaches, and LSU will pursue immediate dismissal of Chavis' suit," the university said. "LSU has also initiated a legal action against Chavis in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, to recover the $400,000 buy-out owed to LSU by Chavis. LSU regrets that what is ordinarily a simple matter must be resolved in litigation, but it will vigorously defend the contractual and constitutional rights of the University."