Discrimination case postponed for Reagan funeral

Updated: June 8, 2004, 6:49 PM ET
Associated Press

LITTLE ROCK -- Closing arguments in Nolan Richardson's discrimination case against the University of Arkansas will be held next week to accommodate a federal observance on Friday declared by President Bush for the funeral of former President Reagan.

U.S. District Court Clerk James McCormack said Tuesday that arguments, originally scheduled for Friday, will be held June 16 beginning at 9 a.m. Written arguments in the case were due Tuesday, but U.S. District Judge William R. Wilson Jr. extended the deadline until 1 p.m. Wednesday.

Arkansas fired Richardson on March 1, 2002, saying the coach had expressed a lack of faith in the Razorbacks' basketball program by saying publicly he would leave if the school paid him his money. Richardson sued, claiming racial discrimination and a violation of free-speech rights guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution.

The trial started May 5 and testimony ended last week. Wilson heard almost a month of testimony and will decide the case without a jury.

Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press