• Loading stock data...
Sunday, February 25, 2024
Rates for the 2024 Best Venue Awards increase this Sunday at 11:59 p.m. ET

The Football Player Suing Ole Miss and Lane Kiffin Releases Text Messages

  • The texts reveal conversations involving Ole Miss defensive tackle DeSanto Rollins, his mother, and athletic department staff members.
  • Rollins filed a federal lawsuit seeking $40M in damages in September.
Lane Kiffin
Petre Thomas-USA TODAY Sports

The attorney for an Ole Miss football player who’s suing the school and its head football coach, Lane Kiffin, filed electronic communications to bolster the arguments against their case’s dismissal. 

The messages, which were filed in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Mississippi on Friday, stem from communications after DeSanto Rollins had what he says was his first contentious meeting with Kiffin, on Feb. 27, and they appeared to show outreach by Rollins and his mother to staff over mental health concerns. 

The supplemental filings included text messages between Rollins and Nick Savage, Ole Miss’s head football strength and conditioning coach.

“Hey coach, I decided it was best for me to take a mental break from everything and resume after I meet with my doctor and get everything in line,” Rollins texted Savage. 

Savage responded: “I am so sorry to hear you have been going through it!!! You doing ok?

Anything we can do to help!?”

Messages left with lawyers representing Ole Miss and Kiffin were not immediately returned. 

In another text exchange filed in court, Rollins’s mother messaged Pat Jernigan, Ole Miss’s assistant A.D. for sports medicine and head football athletic trainer. 

“I feel that my son DeSanto is going through a mental health crises [sic],” Rollins’s mother wrote on Feb. 27. “Anxiety, depression, and bouts of crying. Please see that he speak with a counselor and I will have him monitored as well.”

Jernigan responded: “I will talk with him today.”

That text preceded a March 21 meeting between Kiffin and Rollins, audio of which was first published by FOS last month. 

The latest filings by Rollins push back against the perception that he severed contact with the Ole Miss athletics staff as he avoided meeting with Kiffin directly for a period of time, according to court documents previously filed in the case. 

“You have a f—ing head coach,” Kiffin said during the meeting. “This is a job. Guess what? If I have mental issues  — and I’m not diminishing them — I can’t not see my f—ing boss, when you were told again and again the head coach needs to see you.”

The supplemental filings from Rollins’s attorney, Carroll Edward Rhodes, come after Ole Miss and Kiffin disclosed communications earlier this week to strengthen its motion to dismiss

One of Ole Miss’s filings on Tuesday included a text from Kiffin to Rollins on March 24. 

“Ok since you continue to never respond to any of my calls or texts just take as long as you want/need to do whatever you want to do,” Kiffin wrote. “We will support whatever you want to do. I have never in my 25 year career had a player that just doesn’t respond or communicate with me as their coach but that’s fine. Whatever you think is best.”

Rollins told Kiffin he “cannot respond directly to you any more” in a text that included Rhodes’s contact information. 

Rollins, who’s still on scholarship at Ole Miss, sued Ole Miss in September. In the civil complaint that seeks up to $40 million in damages, he alleged Kiffin “ignored” signs he was suffering from depression following multiple injuries and the death of his grandmother. 

A stay was issued in the case, and no future hearings have been scheduled. 

Copy Link
Link Copied
Link Copied

What to Read

Superdome Super Bowl

Superdome Renovations to Finish in Time for Super Bowl LIX

Renovations will total $500 million and have been ongoing for years.
Michigan defensive lineman Kenneth Grant celebrates a sack on Washington quarterback Michael Penix Jr. in the second quarter during the College Football Playoff national championship game against Washington at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas on Monday, Jan. 8, 2024.

Pay-for-Play Is Here: Federal Judge Says NCAA Cannot Enforce Any NIL Rules

The ruling effectively allows pay-for-play to go forward uninhibited.
NFL salary cap

NFL Salary Cap Sees Historic Spike Ahead of 2024 Season

Each franchise was allotted $255.4M, which is a $30M increase for each team.
Lionel Messi

Copa América Tickets Climb in Latest Lionel Messi Effect

Tickets for Argentina’s game in Miami are pushing five figures.
podcast thumbnail mobile
Front Office Sports Today

How the Negro Leagues Are Staying in the Game


Featured Today

Sham Gods: The Rapidly Growing World of Sports Impersonators on X

Fake Schefters and Wojs, fabricated trade demands, and borrowed profile pictures.
Sep 24, 2023; Oakland, California, USA; A general view of the Oakland Athletics dugout after the game against the Detroit Tigers at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum.
February 24, 2024

Murky Future: Everything You Need to Know About the A’s Move to Las Vegas

Breaking down one of the most drawn-out, multifaceted sagas in sports.
February 18, 2024

Sabrina-Steph Wasn’t the ‘Battle of the Sexes’—But It Was Part of the Bigger War

The competition could play a factor in increasing the WNBA’s media value.
NASCAR Cup Series driver Bubba Wallace (23), in a Star Wars rebel alliance X-wing fighter pilot-inspired race suit, motions to the crowd to get louder during the driver introductions for the Cup Series Championship race at Phoenix Raceway in Avondale on Nov. 5, 2023.
February 17, 2024

Celebrity Owners, International Ambitions, and $7B Media Deals: Welcome to the New NASCAR

NASCAR boldly keeps pace with the increasingly competitive sports and entertainment world.


Powered By

Careers in Sports

Looking for a new job? Check out these featured listings and search for openings all over the world.
Finance Manager
New York, NY
Senior Technical Artist - Sports Technology
EA Sports
Orlando, FL
Assistant Manager, Affiliate Operations
Portland, OR
February 6, 2024

DraftKings Sues Ex-Exec Over ‘Secret Plan’ to Aid Fanatics

Complaint alleges new Fanatics VP “improperly” encouraged DraftKings subordinates to depart.
February 7, 2024

Fanatics Betting Exec Calls DraftKings Allegations ‘Wrong and Disappointing,’ ‘False and Fabricated’

New VIP betting chief refutes accusations of ‘secret plan’ to steal customer info.

Live Sports Are Now High-Tech Experiences

Oracle is leading the technology revolution happening in stadiums across the world.
Brett Favre
February 5, 2024

Mississippi Auditor Sues Brett Favre Over Unpaid Interest Tied to Welfare Scandal

Shad White, who has spearheaded the case against Favre in Mississippi, seeks $729,000.
Ole Miss Lane Kiffin
January 31, 2024

Federal Judge Dismisses $40M Lawsuit Against Ole Miss Football Coach Lane Kiffin

Judge cites lack of evidence of alleged discrimination.
January 31, 2024

Nike Supply Chain Woes: Police Recover $5M in Stolen Merchandise

Nike thefts continue in SoCal as police make arrest, find $5 million in product.
Brett Favre
January 30, 2024

Brett Favre’s Defamation Case Against State Auditor to Proceed

Judge denies Mississippi State Auditor Shad White’s motion to dismiss on Thursday.