BJD95’s Primer on “Joint and Several Liability”

I avoid litigation like the plague, but I do remember the basic tort law concept of “joint and several liability.” As always, Wikipedia has a nice rundown. For example, say A, B, and C together scheme an old woman out of $300K. A court will likely find all 3 individuals jointly and severally liable for the loss. Now, suppose A and B are heroin junkies and effectively judgment-proof, while C is a trust fund baby who robs for kicks. The old woman can collect the full $300K from C, and not just his $100K “share” – because they are jointly and severally liable.

Here is my verdict on last night’s debacle in Greenville – the players, the coaching staff, and the athletic director are all jointly and severally liable. Last night never could have happened if the team had played with any pride to wear the uniform. Last night never could have happened if the coaches had properly prepared and motivated the players. Last night never could have happened if the moronic Lee Fowler hadn’t thought that it was a great idea to kiss Terry Holland’s ass.

But it happened. All are responsible, and 100% so. Pointing fingers at another part of the train wreck is out of the question.

About BJD95

1995 NC State graduate, sufferer of Les and MOC during my entire student tenure. An equal-opportunity objective critic and analyst of Wolfpack sports.

07-08 Basketball NCS Basketball Sidney Lowe

24 Responses to BJD95’s Primer on “Joint and Several Liability”

  1. MadWolf92 12/09/2007 at 12:49 PM #

    There’s another part of the train wreck???

  2. old13 12/09/2007 at 1:23 PM #

    But it all starts with Lee Fowler, as he has authority over all the others, and this is not a court of law!

  3. ncsuftw01 12/09/2007 at 1:34 PM #

    I agree 100%

  4. PacknSack 12/09/2007 at 1:46 PM #

    We all know State has a lot of talent — both in uniform and in the coaching staff. They are, however, a BAD team. They don’t play hard, they appear unprepared and they have no leadership right now. Les put some bad teams on the floor, but they played hard. They didn’t have the talent to run with the big dogs, but they didn’t back down from them. This team is the opposite, and it is much more painful to endure.

    This isn’t about reading articles, this team is lazy. And if a whipping at Michigan State and a pair of embarrassing losses can’t bring about a change in that, this could be the most embarrassing season in a long, long time.

    That being said, I’m not giving up on them. I hold out hope that at some point it will all click.

  5. coppertop 12/09/2007 at 2:46 PM #

    I’d say this article is right on the money… There are some days where not living in NC anymore isn’t entirely a bad thing!

  6. VaWolf82 12/09/2007 at 3:15 PM #

    Sometimes, a team effort isn’t a good thing.

  7. tobaccordshow 12/09/2007 at 4:05 PM #

    To quote myself from the other thread:

    “That’s ashame. The game should’ve never been scheduled in ECU. I will never, for as long as I live, forget nor forgive what happened last night. It’s inexcusable and there must be accountability. I’m cancelling my Wolfpack Club membership until they can prove to me that they’re worth my money. They have to make some senior leadership changes (above head coach) to earn my money back. Wolfpack athletics (not just football and basketball) is rife with disappointment and downright failure. If I hired someone to do a job for me that failed as miserably as the Athletics senior leadership, I would’ve fired them back in 1999.”

  8. 70wolf 12/09/2007 at 4:14 PM #

    unfortunately, you are correct. There is something “bad wrong” with this team. None of us on the outside can really know what it is, we only see how it manifests itself – but there is something bad wrong.

  9. john of sparta 12/09/2007 at 4:51 PM #

    since the grand jury (SFN) returned the indictment,
    and the prosecutor (ECU) denied any plea,
    what say the Jury? what say you all?

  10. FullMoonRising 12/09/2007 at 6:22 PM #

    It’s just too bad that North Carolina is one of the last Contributory Negligence jurisdictions.

    Here, the alumni and fans are contributorily negligent in allowing Lee Fowler to ruin our athletics. As such, no one can recover.

  11. DT44 12/09/2007 at 6:34 PM #

    I see this team going in one of two possible directions:
    A–the players, lacking positive reinforcement (i.e. wins), lose hope, tune out the coaching staff, and just go through the motions the rest of the season…
    B–under the weight of severe criticism by the media and fanbase, they develop the classic “us against the world–we’ll show you!” attitude that might actually translate into performance on the court.

    I would hope for the second case, but see no evidence yet to expect it…

  12. Packaholic1 12/09/2007 at 7:38 PM #

    If we can’t handle ECU away, how are we going to compete in conference play? For years, people have whined about an easy non-conference schedule. Time to start playing and stop talking…

  13. Avid109 12/09/2007 at 7:59 PM #

    How do we hold the parties accountable?

  14. WTNY 12/09/2007 at 8:19 PM #

    I want to thank this edition of Wolfpack basketball. My hopes of a nationally-relevant basketball team were dashed especially early. I get the anguish and teeth-gnashing over before Christmas this year!

    Hey, it’s been 21 years since the 1987 ACC title team. What’s another …. 3 or 5 years?


  15. choppack1 12/09/2007 at 9:02 PM #

    Well, since we’ve identified 3 tort feasors, here’s how I’d break up the liability for THIS loss.

    10% Lee Fowler- He scheduled us against a bad, motivated team on the road. I’d dock him more, but right now, I’m not sure we could play a D1 team from a major conference and beat anyone the way we’ve played our non-tournament games this year.

    60% players – Players have to make plays – they aren’t doing that. They started out well, but allowed ECU too many open looks.

    30% coaches – Have to game plan, use personnell and motivate better. Costner may be out of shape, but coaches are playing him.

  16. WestCoast 12/09/2007 at 11:49 PM #

    Play the bottom six playes on the bench next game Coach Lowe. None of the usual 7. It’s about heart. See previous “room of Dreams”. Prove a point.

  17. pack80 12/10/2007 at 7:31 AM #

    First, love Sid but…… 1. The game WAS made before you got here but don’t act like it’s a big deal. The players follow your lead. If you don’t want to be there, they don’t want to be there and they play like it. 2. Sid could have instead said, “I didn’t make the schedule but we are not afraid to play anyone, anywhere, anytime!” Get the boys on the upbeat. Let some of V’s inspiration come back to you. If you need to make them think they are the underdog then so be it. Whatever works. 3. Free throws! Are you kidding me? Not a hard thing to practice. Make 100 before you hit the showers. 4. If you need someone to come and teach how to stick an ass out, block out and get a rebound, I’m available. The offensive rebounds by the opposing team is getting, no, it IS laughable.
    Sid, love ya man but…. this ain’t the NBA. You need to forget about that and remember what it’s like to play COLLEGE hoops. Bad as I hate to say it, if you need to, look to Durham and Chapel Hill for some pointers. Whatever they are doing it works.

  18. Rick 12/10/2007 at 7:32 AM #

    I hope they jointly get their rear ends in gear before we severe their ties with the universtity.

  19. BoKnowsNCS71 12/10/2007 at 7:50 AM #

    Upsetting but it’s still early in the season. Our expectations were way too high coming into thei year. Replacing a PG and adding a new center is taking some effort.

    These stupid losses are frustrating and disappointing but as I recall last year we did not look good when we didn’t have Atsur — a goood PG tactician — in the December games.

    Lets look at the whole season after this tem gets more PT together. I also think they have hit their rock bottom and as men have to decide what they want to do. Be mediochre or improve and move forward.

  20. BladenWolf 12/10/2007 at 9:22 AM #

    Good point. I certainly felt like I had been assaulted after the Greenville debacle.

    So how do we (fan base) collect? Go after rich Uncle Jed (my favorite option), clean out the new coaching staff in season #2(not likely, but check back in two more seasons), or kick the team off the team (just wait- the glory of college ball is a new rotation every three-four years)?

    I think it’s clear. Foulup must go. 🙂

  21. old13 12/10/2007 at 11:23 AM #

    “So how do we (fan base) collect? . . . I think it’s clear. Foulup must go.”

    GREAT question! It amazes me that the NCSU administration keeps on a guy who has publically insulted (on multiple occasions and in writing) the Wolfpack fans, contributors and alumni; drug the university’s public image through the mud with incompetent coaching searches, public comments and general unprofessional behavior; and commands one the most inept athletic departments I’ve ever encountered. Maybe some leadership as was demonstrated with regard to the basketball coaching change could do the job. In any case, I’m having a very difficult time getting excited in a positive manner about anything Wolfpack any more!

    Yes, Coppertop, it is nice to be away from North Carolina in times like these!

  22. WolftownVA81 12/10/2007 at 11:32 AM #

    And to think, I was all set at the beginning of the season to increase my minimum contribution to the Wolfpack Club. If things keep headed in the current direction, I may have to wait another 20 years to rejoin.

  23. DFMo 12/10/2007 at 3:05 PM #

    Can anyone envision this? Sid doesn’t like what he sees on the floor … looks down the bench and pulls a “ole Roy”. You five guys all go in NOW whilst we have a chat with the starters:

    1 – Gonzalez
    2 – Johnson
    3 – Horner
    4 – Smith
    5 – McCauley

    Talk amongst yourselves …

  24. redfred2 12/14/2007 at 8:12 PM #


    As much as I hate to admit it, I’m good with your line up except for #5. When a player plays fairly significant minutes with no points, no rebounds, and only a foul or two, I have to believe he has better things to do then play basketball. Ben McCauley, along with Brandon Costner and Courtney Fells need to figure out that what they did last season, was last just that, last season. If they want to play for the Wolfpack they had better improve last year’s performance or be ready to be replaced.

    No matter about the mental mistakes, the frustrating play, and whether we were getting beat by 25 points or not, I’d play Gavin over McCauley in a heartbeat right now.

    For that matter, I’d start Ferguson at any position he wanted. Center, power forward, or point guard, then I’d make the others just sit on the bench/their asses and watch. It might be ugly, but it couldn’t get much worse anyway.

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