The Knicks Got Nothing On Fresno State.

It’s not like the CSU system isn’t already planning to jack student fees up come January anyway. However, the firing of former Fresno State’s women’s hoops coach Stacy Johnson-Klein and subsequent lawsuit has resulted in a $19.1 million dollar jury award for sexual harassment ($11 million for “pain and suffering; it’ll get reduced, I suppose). Brooks and Deadspin have already picked up on this, but the fun is not only due to the pleasant eight-figure settlement itself, but also because this case was an enjoyable he-sad-she-said from the get-go.

Johnson-Klein got the axe in 2005 under some very pleasant accusations, including taking prescription painkillers from a player, improper cash transactions, and being abusive towards players and staff:

[FSU president John] Welty said Johnson-Klein skimmed money from her subordinates’ bonuses, obtained a half-full bottle of prescription painkiller from one of her players, was abusive in her treatment of students and staff, was insubordinate and lied at various times during the investigation.

This is the same Welty who’s under fire for the recent judgment — which includes a state senator calling for the legislature to put a block on the entire Cal State budget unless he resigns as president. Johnson-Klein claimed she put up with the harassment until she was fired for asking for equal treatment for the women’s hoops team as compared to the men’s:

Johnson-Klein countered that Fresno State had a long history of treating women in the athletic department as second-class citizens. She said she put up with sexual harassment from her superiors because she didn’t want to lose her job, but drew the line when the university refused to treat her program as it did the men’s basketball team.

When she talked about filing a complaint with the federal government, Johnson-Klein said, the university concocted a biased investigative report into her alleged transgressions and used it as justification to fire her.

This is the third such suit Fresno State has either been found liable for or settled over sexual harassment in the past five months: former volleyball coach Lindy Vivas won a seven-figure judgment and former assistant A.D. Diane Milutinovich settled for $3.5 million. Once is a problem, twice is a trend, three times is fucked up — but let’s just say that reading over most of the articles, Johnson-Klein isn’t the most sympathetic of plaintiffs (some of her former players do not think well of her if you read the Fresno Bee piece, but that doesn’t justify harassment in any way) and Welty shouldn’t be the president of a large public university.

That $950K offer Johnson-Klein made to the school to settle the case looks a lot better now, doesn’t it?

2 Responses

  1. Get real….If Stacy Johnson Klein wanted to be treated equally, then what was with the hoochie outfits? Everything was going just fine with her until someone blew the whistle on her drug use. Never mind that the players felt she was totally wacko. No one, other than her friends and so-called fans, misses her. The program has moved on and in big ways. Maybe that’s how players react when they don’t have a coach constantly berating them and treating them like second class citizens.

  2. Just wait until the “whole” story comes out. Unanimous jury’s do not award plaintiffs this kind of judgement if someone is truly “using drugs” and based off this ONE persons reply, the story has never been rebutted by coach Klein. Did anyone notice she was PREGNANT when suspended and then ultimately wrongfully fired? That means peeing in a cup each month! If anyone who read this or even knew the CALIFORNIA STATE LAW, if SJK did have the alleged “drug problem”CSU claimed, they were bound by state law to immediately place her into a mandatory drug rehab and return her to her job.
    Man it is eye opening how judge mental people can be and how harsh they can be without the facts.
    Your comment about her program, that was souring under her tutelage. Check your facts! Her loyal assistant, who got her job, left to go to Ole Miss right? Furthermore, he was fired within 6 months, stripped of each and every win he had at Fresno State (after serving under Mrs. Klein and banned from the NCAA until 2019.. hmmm from 2005-2019. The stiffest penalty any single coach has ever received from the NCAA.)

    So, we are assuming you hate Coach Klein and certainly have none of the true facts of this case, but the jury did. 9.5 weeks of a jury trial, seems to me, they got it right. Of all the things Coach Klein did in her career as a woman and ambassador of sports, you say she complained after being fired. We’re you in the courtroom to see the facts of here making legitimate complaints from nearly the time she arrived until the time she was wrongfully fired? Did you miss the other 35 coaches fired from California State University? What you didn’t miss is she had the character to stand up for herself and in the end change the law for the state of California along with her attorney Warren Paboojian, by having a bill written and passed so that California is NO LONGER AN AT WILL STATE! KEEP BASHING THE WOMAN, who went thru hell to fight for herself and others for the good of the state. It’s predictable who writes things like this judging her about how she dressed. Wow!
    Yet, we have a Fresno State University MENS basketball player sitting in prison doing life without parole for murder and no one writes about the 13 drug test he and his teammates failed each season, while a manager signed in for them at rehab just to keep them on the court. Why don’t you look up how many drug test Coach Klein’s team tested positive for. That would be a big fat 0 in 3 years..
    If the jury speaking wasn’t enough for you idiots, you just sit and judge while she lives happily and gets a check from Fresno State every month for many years to come. Laughable

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: