Former Washington State head football coach Nick Rolovich announced through his lawyer this morning that he’s taking legal action against the university, Athletic Director Pat Chun, and “all parties responsible” ovr his termination for refusing the COVID-19 vaccine as per the governor’s mandate for state employees:
New: Nick Rolovich's lawyer releases a statement saying that he's taking legal action against Washington State and all parties responsible "for his illegal termination." He accuses AD Pat Chun of "discriminatory and vindictive" behavior.
— Pete Thamel (@PeteThamel) October 20, 2021
Four of the team’s assistant coaches were fired as well:
ICYMI: Washington State University’s football coach Nick Rolovich and four of his assistants were fired after they did not comply with Gov. Jay Inslee’s vaccination mandate, the school said. https://t.co/QWt4bh4H2D
— Newsmax (@newsmax) October 20, 2021
Rolovich’s lawyer claimed in his statement that his client was denied a religious exemption to avoid the shot:
BREAKING: Just got the statement from #Rolovich's attorney. "It is a tragic and damning commentary on our culture, and more specifically, on Chun, that Coach Rolovich has been derided, demonized, and ultimately fired from his job, merely for being devout in his Catholic faith."
— Melissa Luck ☘ (@MelissaKXLY4) October 20, 2021
According to reports, the decision to deny the exemption was made by a blind committee and not the university itself:
This statement reveals that Rolovich’s religious exemption application was denied in the blind review step — and not by Chun and other athletic department personnel.
It also says that Chun “determined” Rolovich would be fired in April. The mandate was announced in August. https://t.co/eE7rMoahYe
— Yahoo Sports College Football (@YahooSportsCFB) October 20, 2021
And it’s pretty clear Rolovich has the support of the team:
— Theo Lawson (@TheoLawson_SR) October 19, 2021
What a mess. Full statement here:
Just received this from an attorney representing Nick Rolovich, who plans to sue #WashingtonState for illegal termination. Accuses AD Pat Chun of “discriminatory and vindictive behavior.” pic.twitter.com/KTOnIchKXD
— Adam Rittenberg (@ESPNRittenberg) October 20, 2021