Former quality control football coach Mike Warren sues FSU for unpaid wages – Tallahassee.com


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Mike Warren, a former Florida State quality control coach under Jimbo Fisher, is suing the university for unpaid wages from the 2017 Independence Bowl and overtime hours accumulated during the past three years of his employment.?

The federal lawsuit was filed Friday in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Florida.

The lawsuit claims the university is in violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act and the Florida Minimum Wage Act, and?that the university?s violation was ?willful, intentional and systemic.?

Warren was one of three FSU quality control coaches promoted to an assistant coach (running backs/special teams) for the Seminoles? bowl victory over Southern Miss Dec. 27 following Fisher?s resignation to become Texas A&M?s new coach.?

Warren was among the quality control coaches not retained by new head coach Willie Taggart.?

His position was terminated Jan. 5, ?2018, according to the lawsuit, after five seasons on staff.?

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Warren, 41, a familiar name locally as a former Tallahassee athlete and coach at the high school level, declined to comment when reached by the Tallahassee Democrat Friday night.

He is being represented by Marie A. Mattox, P.A., a local firm that specializes in employment law.

Stan Wilcox, vice president and director of intercollegiate athletics at FSU, released a statement to the Democrat Friday night.

“We are aware of his claim,” Wilcox said. “We do not comment on personnel matters.”?

The lawsuit states that Warren worked ?approximately 84 hours per week? on bowl game duty from Dec. 8, 2017 to Dec. 27, 2017 and ?received no compensation at all? for his bowl duty.

It also stated that Warren, as a quality control coach, was on call at all hours during the football season, which normally runs from Aug. 1 to Dec. 12, excluding bowl games.

Warren averaged 100 hours per week during this period but was never paid for anything more than 40 hours per week, according to the lawsuit.

The lawsuit also claims that Warren was not allowed to input his own hours for payment and was told someone from ?human resources would handle that for him.??

The decision to have someone else enter Warren’s?hours for him, according to the lawsuit, is “but one glaring indication” of the university’s?”knowing intent.”?

An employee, as permitted by law, could claim back pay for up to three years if an employer willfully violated the?Fair Labor Standards Act.??

The NCAA has a strict limit on the number of on-field coaches.

In addition to the head coach, teams last season were permitted nine full-time assistants (it has been raised to 10 for?2018) and four graduate assistants.?

But there are no limitations to the size of the off-field support staff, i.e., quality control coaches.?

Quality control coaches are often referred to the coaches behind the coaches, helping break down film for their respective segments, organizing game charts and offering suggestions.

They?aren’t allowed to work with players on the field.

The positions at FSU are designated OPS (Other Personnel Services) with an hourly wage and no benefits.?

Warren and fellow quality control coaches Jerry Johnson?(defensive tackles) and David Spurlock (tight ends) were promoted for the Independence Bowl under interim head coach Odell Haggins.

Related: Promotions a smooth transition for FSU trio

More: Column: FSU coaches, assistants deserve praise for sticking around

Haggins was the lone coach from Fisher’s staff retained by Taggart.?

Johnson announced on social media last month that he had joined Fisher’s staff at Texas A&M as an assistant strength coach.?

Warren was a teacher and assistant football and baseball coach at Chiles High when he was hired by Fisher Jan. 16, 2013.?

Fisher resigned last Dec. 1.

Taggart was introduced as the Seminoles’ new coach Dec. 6, hired from Oregon after one season.?
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