Lawsuit against James Franklin dismissed

Author:
Publish date:

A lawsuit against Penn State head coach James Franklin, Nittany Lions AD Sandy Barbour and the school itself brought by a former Lions team doctor has been dismissed, according to PennLive.

Former Penn State team doctor Scott Lynch sued Penn State alleging Franklin had pressured him to bring players back to action before his medical opinion dictated they were ready to resume playing.

While the outcome of the case will go down as a win for Franklin and Penn State, it was a victory won by process and not facts. Judge Andrew H. Dowling dismissed the suit because Lynch missed a filing deadline.

Lynch had to file his suit by Aug. 20, 2019, the judge ruled, but he did not file the suit until three days later. However, the judge ruled Lynch can appeal the dismissal of his Whistleblower Law suit against Franklin and Penn State.

“It might appear that this is a harsh result, but … the 180-day limitations period is mandatory and may not be extended by the court by even one day,” Lynch wrote, via Penn Live. “Moreover, if we were to forgive one day of lateness, would we then have to forgive five days of lateness? Or 10? Where would we draw the line? Simply put, we do not have to draw that line as the Legislature has done it for us.”

Franklin denied accusations of impropriety at the time.

Penn State said it replaced Lynch because he was based in Hershey, Pa., and the program wanted a team doctor who lived in State College. Lynch still works for the Penn State health system.

"We are gratified by today’s ruling because we have always rejected the claims in the complaint," the school said in a statement. "Protecting the health and well-being of students is the single most important priority at Penn State, and that is certainly true for our student-athletes as well. We are pleased that the highly regarded athletic medicine program supporting our student-athletes moves forward under the outstanding direction of a national leader in orthopedic sports medicine."