Sunday, July 26, 2009


The battle between Florida State and the NCAA will now enter a courtroom, as FSU announced Friday it is taking legal action to force the NCAA to release the public records associated with FSU's ongoing appeal.

The case is pending in Leon County Circuit Court and is set for a hearing on Aug. 5 and Aug. 6.

Here is the official release from FSU:

The Florida State University announced today that it is taking legal action to have the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) comply with the public records laws of the state of Florida.

Several news media organizations have sued both the NCAA and The Florida State University to compel the release of public records associated with the university's appeal of an NCAA ruling. Today, the university filed a "cross-claim" in Leon County (Fla.) Circuit Court, essentially against the NCAA. The university also seeks compensation from the NCAA for legal fees and other costs it has incurred because of the NCAA's refusal to release the documents in question.

At issue is the NCAA Committee on Infractions' recent correspondence with Florida State, which is appealing certain sanctions handed down in an academic misconduct investigation involving university student-athletes. The NCAA -- a membership organization that regulates intercollegiate athletics throughout the United States -- posted documents on a secure, custodial, "read-only" Web site that prohibits downloading or printing. That has made it technically impossible for Florida State to provide the document to the public in compliance with Florida law.

"The university has consistently complied with the Public Records Act to the degree that it is able to do so," said Betty Steffens, the university's general counsel. "We do not have custody or control of the documents in question."

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