A little more than an hour before former TCU football player Kolby Listenbee sued head coach Gary Patterson, the Big 12 and his alma mater on Wednesday, the school filed a preemptive strike.
In a motion filed in Tarrant County, TCU claims that the school should be removed from Listenbee’s lawsuit because the two doctors in the suit, Dr. Michele Kirk and Dr. Jason Mogonye, were independent contractors under a health services contract as physicians for TCU’s athletes.
Listenbee’s lawsuit claims that the Patterson and the rest of the defendants pressured him to play through injuries, and by doing so, ultimately cut short his NFL career.
“Employees or agents of JPS Physician Group were not to be deemed or construed to be the employees of TCU for any purpose,” TCU’s petition asserts. “Kirk and Mogonye’s services for TCU as pertaining to Listenbee were pursuant to the contract.”
According to TCU’s petition for declaratory relief, Listenbee’s lawyer sent a letter on Sept. 13, 2017, “threatening to sue TCU and certain employees and alleged agents under the Texas Medical Liability Act.” In that letter, the petition states, “They allege TCU is vicariously liable for the alleged acts or omissions of its employees, including an allegation that the JPSPG physicians are agents and/or employees of TCU.”
That letter, and an earlier letter in which a draft petition was sent to TCU, Listenbee threatened to file suit against TCU in Tarrant County District Court.
The day the suits were filed, Listenbee commiserated with a former TCU teammate B.J. Catalon, who is suffering from debilitating headaches, via Twitter.
TCU’s counter-punch states that Listenbee “failed to return to TCU to complete an exit exam” following the final game of the 2015 season, the 2016 Alamo Bowl win over Oregon.
The TCU motion was filed in Tarrant County District Court, while Listenbee’s original suit was filed in Dallas County Court. TCU’s motion makes no mention of the other defendants in Listenbee’s lawsuit: Patterson, former offensive coordinator Doug Meacham, former athletic director Chris Del Conte, other coaches and the Big 12 Conference.
Listenbee, who graduated from Arlington Bowie in 2012 and from TCU in 2015, is seeking damages in excess of $1 million.