Believe it or not: Ex-MSU staffer files request for Harbaugh deposition in lawsuit against Dantonio
One of the most recent deposition requests by Curtis Blackwell’s representation is particularly strange.
Most will remember that Blackwell is the former Michigan State staffer and assistant to Mark Dantonio who is now suing Dantonio for wrongful termination. Blackwell is suing Dantonio, and others at the university, with a lawsuit that has featured claims and statements in a public back-and-forth over the past couple of weeks.
That story took an interesting and confusing turn Tuesday in a report by John Agar with MLive. According to Agar, a recent filing shows that Blackwell’s representation has requested a deposition from Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh.
If that isn’t enough, a filing shows that Jim Harbaugh, the University of Michigan coach, has been asked to give a deposition…
(Attorney Thomas Kienbaum) said he was recently informed by the University of Michigan that attorneys for Blackwell had contacted U-M in an effort to depose Harbaugh. The filing did not say what attorneys wanted to ask Harbaugh. A school spokesman could not immediately be reached.
It really is a mystery as to why the request has been made to depose Harbaugh. Dantonio and Harbaugh have never served on a coaching staff together, and their only relationship appears to be that of bitter rivals since Harbaugh’s arrival at Ann Arbor in 2015.
It’s worth noting the representation for Dantonio and other MSU figures in the lawsuit have been particularly critical of Blackwell’s public claims and the requests of his representation. In particular, the use of media by Blackwell and his representation has drawn critical comments:
“What is occurring in this case is shockingly wrong,” attorneys Paul McCarthy and Bruce Neckers, who represent two MSU police detectives, said in court records.
They said that attorneys for the plaintiff “pander meritless and irrelevant items to the press, apparently thinking that going after Michigan State University in the media will somehow deliver a ‘win’ to them in their pursuit of this meritless case.”
With the seemingly odd and off-base request for a Harbaugh deposition, maybe those attorneys have a point. It looks like we will have to wait and see on the outcome of the case and whether or not Harbaugh does give a deposition.