Jury deliberations will begin on Monday in the Todd McNair vs NCAA defamation case. The original three-week trial length predictions turned out to be accurate.
Yesterday’s expert (hired gun) testimony concerned the true value of McNair’s lost wages. The NCAA cross-examined Dr. Formuzis and felt they weakened his posture (always testifies for plaintiffs and earns a lot doing it) enough so they could forgo calling their own witness on financial damages evaluation. Non-economic damages associated with loss of reputation are another matter.
Dr. Jo Potuto’s (COI voting member) Wednesday video testimony only served to reinforce that she remembered only information sought by the NCAA in support of their posture and couldn’t remember much, if anything, else.
If the NCAA judged their own members by the same standards that they judged McNair, one wonders how well their own COI voters would be regarded in terms of their own veracity. If you support McNair’s position, you’d probably regard all of them as lacking credibility, if not out and out liars.
Today will be another short day featuring some truncated video testimony from an NCAA Appeals Committee member. According to USCFooball.com’s Dan Weber, “It’s not gonna change anything.”
McNair’s lead attorney, Bruce Broillet, refused to begin his oral argument during the afternoon session later today, as that would give the NCAA all night long to prepare a more thoroughly targetted rebuttal for Friday.
Jury instructions are expected to take 20-30 minutes and Judge Frederick Shaller is still considering whether to allow the jury to justify some damages based on the NCAA’s failure to produce literally any emails written by Paul Dee. The all-important COI Chair, dead since May 2012, has always been regarded as a key NCAA “evil-doer”, who was directly responsible for the severity of USC’s penalties.
The jury will have access to over 1,000 documents to help them formulate their thinking leading to a verdict.
Has this jury already decided key issues regarding NCAA culpability? Some would say yes. That won’t stop Broillet from “dropping the hammer” in an attempt to leave no doubt about that on Friday morning.