Jerry Sandusky Scandal

Attorneys want court to review documents NCAA has said are privileged

Why would an email from NCAA President Mark Emmert to his wife be covered by attorney-client privilege?

That’s a question counsel for state Sen. Jake Corman and state Treasurer Rob McCord would like the court to examine.

On Wednesday, attorney Matthew Haverstick, of Conrad O’Brien PC, filed a brief further supporting Corman and McCord’s attempts to force the NCAA to produce documents.

The two are suing the NCAA and Penn State in Commonwealth Court to keep the $60 million in fine money levied by the college sports organization against the university after the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse scandal.

According to court documents, the NCAA responded to previous requests for documents by upping the number of documents listed as privileged on a log submitted to the plaintiffs. The revised log now contains more than 2,100 allegedly privileged documents, the plaintiffs claim.

Those documents, they say, include about 200 emails in which non-attorneys are communicating and NCAA officials are copied, as well as another 500 or so in which no attorneys are involved at all. One of those is a Sept. 23, 2013, email from Emmert to his wife, which allegedly was withheld as regarding legal advice from NCAA’s chief counsel.

Other documents have been so heavily redacted, the filing says, that the parties involved are almost impossible to ascertain.

Haverstick asked the court to either compel the NCAA to produce documents in unredacted form or to review the documents to determine which are legitimately privileged.

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