>  Hot Legal Topics   >  Why The RIGHT Attorney Matters

Why The RIGHT Attorney Matters

Disclosure: I am a Will Wade fan.  In my opinion, he is among the best basketball coaches in America with much time to become THE best.  Is he cheater?  Do all major college coaches cheat?  Who knows but however he gets his players, Coach Wade makes them better and knows how to shape them into a winning team.  Yet this superstar finds himself in the middle of a very large NCAA mess with few good options for amicable resolution.  How did he get here?

Plenty of college hoops coaches have been accused of the same things as Will Wade.  Some have been accused of much worse.  None to my recollection have been taped making blunt statements of the same nature as those attributed to Wade.  But even with the purported statements, it has only been suggested, not proven nor even formally alleged, that Wade broke the NCAA rules. So why the suspension and trip deep into the rabbit’s hole.

Wade was asked by LSU to address the rumors of wrong doing.  He declined on advice of then counsel, Michael McGovern. Bad move based on bad advice. Wade has no contractual protection allowing him to ignore cooperation requests from his employer.  His refusal to cooperate exposed him to termination for cause forfeiting the balance of his lucrative contract.  Not good.  Further, Wade’s failure to cooperate with the LSU and NCAA investigation is itself a violation of NCAA regulation exposing him to NCAA sanctions irrespective of the truth of the allegations against him.  Also, not good.  Worse still, Wade’s worst case scenario, an extended show cause suspension, was unlikely to increase if he was untruthful or ambiguous in cooperating with LSU and the NCAA.  So why not sit down and talk?

Fast forward nearly five weeks and Wade has a new attorney.  Rumors are afoot that Wade is now willing to and soon will meet with LSU.  Great move based on solid advice but maybe too late.  This meeting could have happened five weeks ago.  If so, maybe LSU is still playing basketball. If it did, Will Wade and LSU basketball would certainly be in a better position that it is now. Had they met, we all would have been saved five weeks of drama and rumor.  Now it looks like that meeting would have happened if Will Wade had different representation five weeks ago.  And that is why the RIGHT attorney matters.