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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

State AG: Former WSU football coach Nick Rolovich files $25 million wrongful firing claim

Rolovich  (Tyler Tjomsland/The Spokesman-Review)

Former Washington State University football coach Nick Rolovich filed a $25 million tort claim in April against the university, alleging he was wrongfully terminated last year after failing to comply with the state’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate.

Rolovich was fired by the university in October after WSU denied his request for a religious exemption from the vaccine mandate imposed by Gov. Jay Inslee for all state employees. He appealed his firing in a letter submitted in November to Athletic Director Pat Chun, but the appeal was denied.

The tort claim was submitted April 27 to the state Department of Enterprise Services Office of Risk Management.

The filing claims that the termination was a breach of contract that violated Rolovich’s rights to religious freedom and resulted in reputational harm and defamation, among other damages.

State law provides that a claimant must wait 60 days before they can file a lawsuit. Rolovich has not filed a lawsuit against the university as of Tuesday, however, according to the state Office of the Attorney General.

Brian Fahling, Rolovich’s attorney in this matter, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

This story is developing