Alabama State and the Montgomery Advertiser have decided to continue their longstanding rocky relationship after the newspaper recently published an article announcing it was suing the university for withholding public records regarding the football program.
The Advertiser apparently has taken issue with Alabama State, figuratively saying, “Na na na na na, you can’t get them,” when asked to turn over documents reporter Josh Moon requested.
Among the items Moon wants to see are voluntary quit forms involving football players who left the program, revoked scholarships forms, and documents pertaining to conversations Alabama State and the NCAA had about allegations the football team was hold unsanctioned practices even though it had been restricted from doing so because of APR probation.
Additionally, Moon requested all correspondence between ASU officials and attorneys working on behalf of ASU and Bethune-Cookman University officials, and attorneys representing Bethune-Cookman University regarding investigations at BCU of possible NCAA violations during Brian Jenkins’ tenure there.
Alabama State said some of the records were deemed confidential under the the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act of 1974.
The newspaper deciding to take legal action against Alabama State for the records is a tactic seemingly to strong-arm the school into yielding to its demands.
Moon, who has covered Alabama State for years, has written about various lawsuits involving the university, audits, embattled ASU President Gwendolyn Boyd’s relationship with everyone at the school, NCAA violations regarding the football team, the school’s credit rating dropping, and allegations that new football coach Brian Jenkins was a tyrant at Bethune-Cookman.
If there is anything that stinks at Alabama State, Moon and the Advertiser have been all over it to document the stench. And if you’re Alabama State, would you be willing to just hand over documentation that might further damage the school’s reputation among the public?
We will see how this all plays out in the coming days. But for now, it appears Alabama State is fighting a losing battle.
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