On February 23rd, a group of women filed a federal Title IX lawsuit against the University of Tennessee alleging that the school has exhibited “deliberate indifference” to sexual assaults by athletes and other students.
The lawsuit contains the following allegation about Peyton Manning (note: Manning is not a named defendant):
Tennessee filed a motion to strike the Manning reference, arguing that it does not relate to this case and is inflammatory and scandalous. In a ruling this week, the Judge denied Tennessee’s request finding that the allegations do relate to the allegations that the University fostered a hostile sexual environment:
The Judge also noted that, although Manning “is in the public eye”, the court is not going to treat him differently:
It remains to be seen whether the allegations will be admissible at trial. The Judge specifically noted that Tennessee could again seek to have evidence of these allegations excluded prior to trial. For now, Manning will remain an interesting subplot of the case. Moving forward, it is worth keeping an eye on whether Plaintiffs seek discovery relating to, and/or a deposition of, Peyton Manning and/or Jamie Naughright.