LSU and John Chavis set for court today
BATON ROUGE - The saga between LSU and former defensive coordinator John Chavis will be back in court Thursday in Baton Rouge.
LSU will ask a judge to make Chavis turn over his cell phone number and phone records. LSU wants Chavis to pay $400,000 for breaking his contract early when he left the Tigers to coach at Texas A&M. However, Chavis' attorney Jill Craft says the coach never had a contract at LSU.
The school also wants a judge to throw out defamation claims made by Chavis. Chavis says LSU painted him in false public light by accusing him of "defecting." The coach also says that he did not begin working for A&M behind LSU's back.
The divorce between LSU and Chavis began in November 2014 when Athletic Director Joe Alleva approached Chavis about signing a new contract, although the coach never had a contract, according to Craft. Court documents signed by Craft state that Alleva wanted Chavis to sign the contract containing the "Les Miles clause." The clause would automatically terminate Chavis as defensive coordinator if LSU ever fired Les Miles.
The documents go on to state that Alleva then became hostile toward Chavis. Then Miles attempted to set up a meeting between himself, Chavis and Alleva. However, Alleva never showed up for the meeting and told Miles over the phone that Chavis can either sign the contract or leave, according to court documents.
Later that year LSU began searching for a replacement. On January 2, Alleva sent a letter to Chavis demanding $400,000. Three days later Chavis delivered a letter of resignation with a 30 day notice.
In August, a Texas judge dismissed a lawsuit filed by Chavis against LSU deciding to let the squabble play out in Louisiana courts.
Chavis helped lead the Tigers to 71 wins in six years. LSU beat Texas A&M 19-7 in the first meeting between Chavis' Aggies defense and the Tigers. The attorney representing LSU in this case, Bob Barton, declined to do an interview.