AG Finds No Crime in Bellotti Contract

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Oregon Attorney John Kroger announced today that his office will not be filing criminal charges against the University of Oregon over its handling of the dismissal of former football coach and athletic director Mike Bellotti, who was given a roughly $2.3 million severance earlier this year by the school. Bellotti was working without a contract at the time of the generous payout. In a press release issued Thursday morning, Kroger said the university had exposed itself to “substantial legal risk” by allowing Bellotti to work without a written contract. Because of that legal risk, Kroger said it was not unreasonable for the school to settle the matter. Bellotti left the school to take a job with ESPN after the university’s new president Richard Lariviere informed him privately that it would be cutting ties with the popular coach turned AD. Lariviere has subsequently said that the university needed someone with more business experience than Bellotti to run the school's athletic department (aka cash cow). Hmmm. Maybe it's time to pick up the Swoosh Phone and call Uncle Phil.


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