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Jaguars head coach Urban Meyer and general manager Trent Baalke were subpoenaed as part of a lawsuit surrounding former Iowa strength coach Chris Doyle, the team said Wednesday. The suit is being filed by lawyers of Black players who are suing Doyle for discrimination while working for the Hawkeyes. Jacksonville said that both Meyer and Baalke submitted a written response to the subpoena, which centers around the Jaguars deciding to hire and quickly fire Doyle earlier this offseason.
“We respect and will cooperate with the legal process as required,” the team said, via the Associated Press. “However, the Jaguars have no information that would be relevant to the lawsuit between student-athletes and the University of Iowa.”
The federal lawsuit accuses Doyle of using racial slurs against Black players, forcing them to abandon Black hairstyles along with fashion and culture to instead fit the “Iowa Way.” Doyle, who has denied the allegations put against him, was paid $1.1 million in a resignation agreement with the school back in June of 2020 after a number of former players took to social media and accused him of discrimination.
An investigation conducted by an outside law firm found that the program’s rules “perpetuated racial and culture biases and diminished the value of cultural diversity.”
As for the Jaguars angle of this saga, the team officially hired Doyle back in February and that decision was immediately met with controversy. Meyer originally defended the hire by noting he’d known Doyle for nearly 20 years and “vetted him thoroughly.” However, Doyle’s tenure in Jacksonville only lasted a day after the hiring was announced as he elected to resign amid the backlash.