Texas Longhorns head coach Charlie Strong has a developing -- and potentially ugly -- situation on his hands, as he's named as a "critical witness" in the divorce and custody case of a University of Louisville booster and trustee, Johnathan Blue. His attorney has petitioned a Kentucky court to order Strong to give a deposition and turn over cell phone, text, and travel records, as well as gifts allegedly provided to Strong by Blue's estranged wife, Tracy Blue.
In a statement released on Sunday, Strong promised Texas fans that the legal proceedings, if they do end up further involving him, "will not affect my focus in any way." For that to be the case, Strong will have to avoid being deposed or providing the records Blue's attorneys are trying to procure -- otherwise, the time expenditure by Strong will take his focus away from Longhorns football.
And so while it's not clear what type of relationship Strong had with Blue, a Sports Illustrated legal analyst provided some thoughts on how Strong and his legal team could fight compliance with the subpoena desired by Blue and his attorney:
- He needs more time to assemble the requested materials than is allowed by the subpoena.
- He no longer possesses some of the requested materials, such as old cell phones and dated clothing items.
- Blue's demands of Strong are excessive and burdensome, and are intended to embarrass Strong.
- Some or all the demanded evidence -- such as gifted clothing to Strong and Strong's travel records -- are irrelevant to whether Jonathan Blue should have, as he demands, sole custody over his daughters.
- Blue's demands for travel records and electronic communications would force Strong to give up trade secrets (for instance, if requested travel records are related to Strong's methods for recruiting high school players, Strong could insist that their disclosure would compromise one of his comparative coaching advantages and thus undermine his career).