Attorney Tom Mars: 'Football players in the B1G deserve a better explanation'
Tom Mars wants some answers. The high-profile college athletics attorney isn’t curious about why the B1G canceled the fall football season for himself, he wants the student-athletes and their parents to get the information they deserve.
On Wednesday, Mars filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request with Michigan State University, asking for documents pertaining to the B1G’s decision to cancel the football season. His request was thorough and detailed, as you might expect.
Speaking with Angelique Chengelis of The Detroit News, Mars was asked why he decided to file the FOIA request. It’s all so the players and parents can receive the answers they deserve.
“If nothing else, the football players in the B1G deserve a better explanation than what they commissioner said in the uninformative message he ironically described as an ‘Open Letter,'” Mars said. “It would be a mistake for the schools to engage in their typical stonewalling in responding to my FOIA requests. After all, I won’t just give the players, their parents and the sportswriters whatever responsive records the schools provide. At the risk of sounding cynical, I’ll also share the predictable letters the schools will send me in the next week setting forth their best efforts at evasion and delay.
“This isn’t my first rodeo with state universities that might try to avoid the requirements of state FOIA laws because the requested records involve athletics. I’d like to think the B1G public schools won’t follow that familiar patterns, but we’ll find out soon enough.”
For people asking what’s the point, attorney Tom Mars on his Big Ten FOIA filings. “If nothing else, the football players in the Big 10 deserve a better explanation……” pic.twitter.com/J6Guy5C7Gs
— angelique (@chengelis) August 22, 2020
Even when B1G commissioner Kevin Warren fired off the “Open Letter to the B1G Community,” parents were not satisfied. On Friday, a handful of parents of student-athletes made the trip to Chicago to protest outside the conferences’ headquarters.
The message? Provide open lines of communication, transparency and an explanation behind the decision.
If the B1G doesn’t do that voluntarily, Mars is going to do everything he can to pull the explanation out of the league.