The story of former Alabama women’s basketball player Daisha Simmons has taken another turn since we last updated.
On Monday, the Asbury Park Press obtained a letter sent from Alabama’s president to Simmons stating that the university “considers this matter closed“.
On Tuesday, the website SwishAppeal.com, which has been all over this story from the beginning, reported that Don Jackson, Simmons’ attorney, has filed a Title IX complaint against the school. Jackson is a high-profile lawyer that has represented a number of collegiate athletes against the NCAA or the universities they play for. He was involved in Leticia Romero’s case against Kansas State, helping her win a release that was initially denied by the school.
“This is about pure intimidation and retaliation,” Jackson told SwishAppeal.com. “I notified University of Alabama’s president (Dr. Judy Bonner) via email on Friday: we formally filed a complaint with them and filed a Title IX complaint because this coaching staff’s actions are (tantamount) to harassment, they amount to bullying, they amount to really treating female student-athletes differently than they’ve historically treated male student-athletes in that athletic department.”
Jackson also told CBSSports.com that while he has not taken legal action against the school yet, if they do not investigate the allegations, he will be filing a civil suit in federal court.
And now Simmons has had to go public with proof that she did provide Alabama with all the information regarding her decision to transfer to Seton Hall. She sent SwishAppeal.com a letter that she gave to the Alabama administration that clearly stated she was transferring due to the deteriorating health of her brother and her mother as well as her desire to enter an MBA program.
In June, Simmons told the Montgomery Advisor that “I talked to one of the administration people. I told him about wanting to do my MBA, I told him about my family health issues and he told me straight to my face, ‘well, I’m not going to release you. You can file an appeal.’ So I had no other choice. I wasn’t just going to stay there. I didn’t want it to get that far, but they didn’t want to release me so I had no other choice.”
This may actually be good news, however.
If, as Simmons alleges, Alabama is telling people that they were not made aware of her family’s medical issues when she decided to transfer, than it may mean that the university is starting to realizing just how badly they messed up here.
In order for Simmons to get eligible at Seton Hall this season, she needs Alabama to support a waiver she filed with the NCAA. It’s that simple. She just needs the school’s support.
Maybe — just maybe — they’re realizing now that it would be so much easier just to grant their support and wash their hands of this mess.