Former Syracuse assistant coach Bernie Fine is ready to address those who have done him wrong or assisted in his demise as a coach. After being fired by the university in November of 2011 steaming from sexual abuse allegations, which the accuser admitted to lying about, Bernie has started the process to sue ESPN for defamation.
ESPN’s Mark Schwarz and Arty Berko were the first to break news of the allegations against Fine on Outside the Lines in November of 2011.
Fines indicated he’ll sue for defamation and seek undefined damages, according to The Associated Press, who were able to obtain a copy of the “summons with notice” from the county clerk, which sat unreported since Nov. 1, 2012 until Thursday.
The wife of Fine, Laurie Fine, is also suing the network for defamation.
The co-defendants are reportedly Hearst Corp. and The Walt Disney Co., joint owners of ESPN, plus the network’s reporter and producer on the Fine story, Mark Schwarz and Arthur Berko, respectively.
ESPN has declined to comment stating they don’t comment on pending litigation and stands by its reporting.
Fine was hired as consultant for an Israel basketball team. In some people’s eyes that’s a big step down from his previous position, where he worked for 35 season as an assistant coach. I’m guessing ESPN will try to settle this out of court.