Nearly three years after losing his job at the University of Southern California, former coach Steve Sarkisian has lost his lawsuit against the school.
An arbitrator ruled in favor of the university in the wrongful-termination suit, with the Los Angeles Times reporting Monday that the decision was rendered last week. Sarkisian was reportedly seeking $30 million from USC, claiming that his then-employer did not allow him to seek treatment for alcoholism though California law recognizes it as a disability.
"I am disappointed in the decision, but we will respect it and move on," Sarkisian, who is now the offensive coordinator for the Atlanta Falcons, said Monday in a statement. "Much gratitude to everyone who has shown their support and stood by me. The last two years have been trying, but I am in now a great place, healthy, happy and loving my job with the Falcons and have the support of my family and friends and that's where my focus is and will remain."
Sarkisian was fired by then-USC athletic director Pat Haden in October 2015 after numerous incidents in which the Trojans head coach was believed to be drunk in front players and/or the public. In one incident, Sarkisian was caught on video using a profanity and slurring his speech at a pep rally.
There were also reports he was drunk at a team meeting and suspicions he was drunk on the sideline during a game against Arizona State, according to a report by ESPN in 2015.
Two months after his firing, Sarkisian sued USC. Three months later, he agreed to arbitration.
According to the L.A. Times, Sarkisian was seeking the $12.6 million remaining on his contract at the time of his termination, as well as "unspecified damages."
"We are pleased that the arbitration has reached its rightful conclusion and we wish Steve Sarkisian well," USC athletic director Lynn Swann said in a statement.
--Field Level Media