Former coach Steve Sarkisian sues USC for $30 million; school responds

LOS ANGELES -- Former USC head football coach Steve Sarkisian has filed a $30 million lawsuit against the school, according to media reports.

The University of Southern California fired Sarkisian in October, just a day after he was put on an indefinite leave of absence for alleged substance abuse problems.

Sarkisian is alleging that USC broke the law by firing someone with a disability, TMZ sports reports.

"Alcoholism is a recognized disability under California law," attorney Alan Loewinsohn told TMZ. "So firing somebody because of that disability is against the law."

Sarkisian is suing for breach of contract, breach of implied covenant of good faith, failure to accommodate, discrimination on the basis of disability, retaliation, violation of confidentiality of medical info and more.

USC issued the following response:  “Much of what is stated in the lawsuit filed today by Steve Sarkisian is patently untrue.  While the university does not as a matter of practice comment on personnel matters or litigation, the record will show that Mr.Sarkisian repeatedly denied to university officials that he had a problem with alcohol, never asked for time off to get help, and resisted university efforts to provide him with help.

"The university made clear in writing that further incidents would result in termination, as it did.  We are profoundly disappointed in how Mr. Sarkisian has mischaracterized the facts and we intend to defend these claims vigorously.”