The NCAA was ''malicious'' in its investigation of a former Southern California assistant football coach who was linked in a report to a scandal surrounding Heisman Trophy-winning tailback Reggie Bush, a judge said Wednesday.
The NCAA's report on ethical breaches by Todd McNair was flawed, and the former coach has shown a probability he can win his defamation claims, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Frederick Shaller said.
The NCAA had sought to have the case dismissed, but Shaller disagreed. He said after reviewing sealed documents in the McNair inquiry, which was tied to a gift scandal involving Heisman Trophy-winner Reggie Bush, he was convinced that the actions of NCAA investigators were ''over the top.''
His ruling states emails between an investigative committee member, an NCAA worker and a person who works in the agency's appeals division ''tend to show ill will or hatred'' toward McNair.
Laura Wytsma, an attorney for the NCAA, declined comment but said during the hearing...