Is Ole Miss trying to turn Barney Farrar into a scapegoat in the NCAA’s investigation? That’s the claim of the attorney representing Farrar in the case.
Bruse Loyd, attorney for the former Rebels assistant AD, told Yahoo Sports that the university appears to be trying to throw his client “under the bus” in the continuing NCAA investigation into the program.
Farrar was fired by the school in December. He was linked to several of the 21 allegations facing the Ole Miss football program. His title had been “Assistant A.D./High School & Junior College Relations,” and in his bio on the Ole Miss athletic website, it said Farrar “plays a vital role in recruiting.”
Yahoo also reports that the university is expected to file its response to the NCAA’s Notice of Allegations next week.
Loyd, of the Houston-based law firm Jones, Gillaspia & Loyd, said he wasn’t pleased with the tone set by the university in its briefs responding to the NCAA.
“The narrative coming out of Oxford was that Barney was being portrayed as the lone, rogue actor and everyone else was above reproach,” Loyd said.
Loyd termed the university’s response a “betrayal,” saying Farrar was targeted because he was “unsophisticated” and “expendable.”
“Barney’s thinking is, ‘We were all in this together – what happened to me?’ ” said Loyd, who said the school’s response was “not the Ole Miss way.”
It’s not the first time Loyd has gone public with his position in the case. Earlier this week, Loyd told an Indiana television station that he believed the Rebels are “as close to a death penalty as you can get.”
Loyd acknowledged that Farrar is unlikely to be fully exonerated — even “on Johnnie Cochran’s best day.”
With Loyd’s statement, it’s clear that the school and its former employee are far from united in their response to the allegations. That threatens to make the battle even more messy and contentious.
Some good news for the program: Loyd did say that he has not yet seen anything in the university’s response briefs that directly implicates coach Hugh Freeze in wrongdoing.
No official dates have been set for the hearing with the NCAA’s infractions committee, but it’s expected to occur at some point this summer. The school already has self-imposed a bowl ban for the 2017 season.
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