COLUMBUS, Ohio, Sept. 20 (UPI) -- Former Ohio State men's basketball coach Jim O'Brien has won a nearly $2.5 million judgment from the school through a lawsuit filed after he was fired.
O'Brien was fired in June 2004 after admitting that in 1998 he lent $6,000 to the mother of a recruit who was having financial problems. Ohio State said that loan, a violation of NCAA rules, constituted a breach of O'Brien's contract.
Both sides had appealed a Court of Claims ruling that O'Brien hadn't broken his contract with the loan, with the coaching seeking more than the court ordered paid.
However, Franklin County (Ohio) Court of Appeals on Wednesday agreed with the ruling and also tossed out O'Brien's side of the appeal, letting the award of nearly $2.5 million stand.
The courts said Ohio State didn't have sufficient cause to fire the coach without compensation.
O'Brien was fired after admitting to loaning the mother of Serbian recruit,
Aleksander Radojevic $6,000.
Radojevic was declared ineligible and never played for Ohio State.
Ohio State was placed on three years probation by the NCAA in March 2006 for violations, including those during O'Brien's tenure.
O'Brien coached the Buckeyes for seven seasons, posting a 133-88 record with two Big Ten titles.