Attorneys representing the Razorback Foundation, which serves as the Arkansas fundraising arm, have filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit brought about by New York Giants outside linebackers coach and senior defensive assistant Bret Bielema over a multi-million dollar pay dispute.
KATV reports that the Razorback Foundation’s motion to dismiss suggests Bielema bears the responsibility for stopped payments after satisfying their buyout agreement.
“In truth, while Bielema attempts to point the finger at the foundation, he shoulders the blame,” the filing said.
According to the filing, Bielema and the Razorback Foundation agreed in January 2018 that the coach was owed an $11.9 million buyout. As part of the agreement, a specific clause stipulated Bielema was to put forth a good-faith effort to find another job, to mitigate the foundation’s financial obligations.
According to the filing, Bielema finding a job that paid more than $150,000 would have satisfied that obligation.
After being terminated in 2017, Bielema was hired as a defensive consultant with the New England Patriots in 2018. By 2019, he was promoted to defensive line coach and has since followed head coach Joe Judge to New York.
The Razorback Foundation stopped monthly payments to Bielema in December of 2018 when it was reported that his salary with the Patriots was far below market value for an NFL assistant. At the time, Bielema was reportedly earning $100,000 annually, but that was bumped to $250,000 in 2019 and then $400,000 with the Giants.
The lawsuit claims the Razorback Foundation’s stop in payments represents “calculated, bad faith effort to renege on its contractual obligations.”
Bielema has offered no public comments on this financial dispute and corresponding lawsuit.