Les Miles reached settlement with student over harassment allegations while serving as LSU coach, per report


The branches of the ongoing investigation into LSU’s handlings of allegations of sexual misconduct and domestic violence cases have reached Lawrence, Kansas. A report from Andrea Gallo and Brooks Kubena of the Baton Rouge Advocate on Wednesday reveals that current Kansas coach Les Miles previously reached a settlement with a former athletic department student intern while he served as head coach of the Tigers program. According to the report citing multiple sources, the student accused Miles of “hitting on her.” 

Specifics of the settlement are practically non-existent — The Advocate says that it “does not turn up in searches of Baton Rouge court records” — but Miles was nevertheless the subject of another investigation by Baton Rouge law firm Taylor Porter at the time, around 2013, per USA Today. The Advocate also reported that an attorney from Taylor Porter, Vicki Crochet, contacted LSU’s H.R. director, A.G. Monaco, asking him to keep information about the investigation a secret from the university’s higher ups — which he declined to do. The contents of that investigation have been kept under wraps, but attorneys representing Miles have agreed to allow the court in Baton Rouge to release it. 

The revelation of the Taylor Porter investigation is timely given the broader investigation by the Husch Blackwell law firm into LSU’s dealings with such matters dating back to Miles’ time in Baton Rouge. 

Miles, who was fired by LSU four games into the 2016 season, denied that he harassed the student when reached by the paper. He did not, however, directly address questions about the settlement. LSU Vice President of Strategic Communications Jim Sabourin also released a brief statement to the paper, saying, “As part of the Husch Blackwell review and our internal investigations, we have heard about a settlement but LSU is not a party to it and we have not seen it.” 

The current federal investigation from the Department of Education was prompted after USA Today published a scathing, in-depth report in November 2020 on various mishandlings of sexual misconduct complaints against students, including top football players like former running back Derrius Guice and wide receiver Drake Davis. The allegations span the timelines for both Miles and current coach Ed Orgeron. How the Miles settlement plays into that remains to be seen. 

Kansas, which is 3-18 in two years under Miles, has not issued a statement. 

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