Lotief lawsuit against Ragin’ Cajuns settled, dismissed

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A pair of lawsuits related to Michael Lotief’s firing from Louisiana-Lafayette have been dismissed by a federal judge following settlement.

Per a report from KATC in Lafayette, the court was notified on June 4th that a resolution had been reached in two separate cases that both related to Lotief’s controversial departure from the Ragin’ Cajuns program. Lotief was fired from the program in November of 2017 just weeks after he had been suspended from his role as head coach.

Information about the nature and terms of the settlements was not immediately available.

In the first case, initially filed in September of 2018, Lotief sued the school and several employees, including the university president; athletic director; and senior woman administrator. Lotief’s suit included a number of allegations, including defamation; discrimination because of disabilities; Title IX retaliation; and other claims. Since his firing, Lotief spent a brief stint tutoring the Chinese national team and now owns a fried chicken restaurant.

Separately, also in September 2018, a number of former Ragin’ Cajuns players filed a civil rights complaint that contained allegations of gender discrimination. Shortly before Lotief’s firing, then-members of the program levied accusations of Title IX violations against the school, and held a press conference in support of him after his firing.

Lotief’s case was originally filed in district court in Baton Rouge, but was later moved to federal court. The players’ initial complaint was filed with the Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights.

Prior to his departure from the program, Lotief had served as the head or co-head softball coach for the Ragin’ Cajuns since 2003. From 2003-2012, he and wife Stefni were co-head coaches before Michael Lotief assumed the duties solo prior to the 2013 season. In 2017, what would be his final season, he led the Ragin Cajuns to a 47-8 overall record. He led his team to the Women’s College World Series three times during his tenure, most recently in 2014.

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