North Carolina judge issues new ruling in ACC vs. Clemson court case

A North Carolina judge has released his ruling on Clemson’s motions to stay and dismiss a lawsuit the ACC filed against the Charlotte school during their legal battle related to exit fees and potential realignment.

And he sides with the conference.

In the case of Clemson vs. The ACC, which was filed in Charlotte a day after Clemson sued its South Carolina conference in an effort to get out of the ACC’s grant of rights and exit fee, North Carolina Business Court Chief Judge Louis A. Bledsoe wrote in an opinion released Wednesday that he had denied the school’s motion to dismiss the case on sovereign immunity grounds.

He also denied the school’s proposal to stay (or pause) the case.

The ruling wasn’t a particular surprise, as Bledsoe had made a similar decision in an ACC-Florida State case earlier this year, denying FSU’s motions to stay and dismiss the case and allowing the conference trial to continue in Charlotte.

Bledsoe wrote in Wednesday’s ruling that a number of factors “decisively outweigh Clemson’s choice of the South Carolina forum in determining the extent of the rights Clemson granted to ACC in the Grant of Rights Agreements, Clemson’s related, and later added, claims for defamation of ownership and Clemson’s Challenge to the Enforceability of the Withdrawal Payment in the ACC Constitution.”

Clemson may appeal the ruling.

The school and the ACC will meet in Pickens County court Friday morning, where a judge there will hear similar arguments from the ACC, which has filed motions to dismiss and stay Clemson vs. ACC case in SC (just like Clemson did) for NC case before it was denied).

This is a development story and will be updated.

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