Today, seven former members of the University of Illinois women’s basketball team have filed a suit against their alma mater.
The suit claims that head coach Matt Bollant and former assistant coach Mike Divilbiss created a racially hostile environment during their time at Illinois. The suit also cites Illinois athletic director Mike Thomas for his negligence and not addressing the issues properly.
Filed under the Civil Rights Act of 1964, this suit is seeking $10 million in damages.
The suit, in its entirety, can be read here.
Via the Chicago Tribune, the allegations include:
“-Coaches holding segregated practices and travel accommodations.
-Coaches calling black Illini players and opponents derogatory names such as “West Side ghetto,” and describing them as “undisciplined” and “unintelligent.”
-Coaches using more severe discipline for black players than white players.
-Coaches calling black players “crabs,” describing them as dragging each other down much like crabs trying to crawl out of a bucket.”
This isn’t the first time Illinois is dealing with this either.
In April, the parents of three of the players involved in this suit sent letters to the university, claiming the same issues found above. The university launched an investigation internally, reporting that it found no violations of NCAA rules or federal laws. At the end of the investigation, however, assistant coach Divilbiss stepped down.
This is the second suit filed against Illinois in as many months, the first being former soccer player Casey Conine’s alleged mistreatment by coaching and medical staff after suffering a concussion.
*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports