Former Ole Miss assistant football coach David Saunders is taking on the NCAA.

Saunders coached at Ole Miss for three different stints, the last in 2010 when he was part of football administration.

It was then that the NCAA said that Saunders participated in falsifying scores of five recruits at an ACT testing site in Waynesboro.

Saunders joined the staff at Louisiana-Lafayette in 2011 and in 2016 received an eight-year show-cause from the NCAA which would require any NCAA school that desired to hire Saunders to convince an NCAA panel that he should be hired. The show cause was extended to 2032 in 2017.

Saunders, who is out of coaching and lives in Pensacola, Florida, has retained Tupelo attorney Jim Waide.

“Our suit alleges that he is innocent of the charges and that the NCAA’s fact-finding procedures are so unreliable that they violate the due process clause of the Mississippi constitution,” Waide said.

The complaint says the NCAA in compiling its case against Saunders interviewed athletes “whom it controls since the NCAA can declare ineligible those athletes who do not cooperate in an investigation.”

The complaint alleges that Saunders truthfully denied NCAA charges against him.

It charges the NCAA with negligence, malicious interference with employment and denial of due process.

Saunders is seeking actual and punitive damages and to void the show-cause.

parrish.alford@journalinc.com

Twitter: @parrishalford

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