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Arizona Cardinals to start regular season while still facing racial discrimination lawsuit

The Arizona Cardinals start the NFL regular season on Sept. 11 while the team is still a defendant in a racial discrimination lawsuit by a former head coach.

Steve Wilks is now an assistant coach for the Carolina Panthers, which are scheduled to host the Cardinals in October.

By then a federal judge in New York could rule if the lawsuit alleging racist hiring practices in the NFL should be arbitrated by the league commissioner.

Wilks is among three Black coaches seeking a jury trial instead.

In a recent filing, their lawyers compared letting the commissioner decide the case to an unconscionably biased kangaroo court.

Wilks’ record in one year as head coach of the Cardinals was 3-13.

One allegation is that Wilks was treated differently than the white general manager, who kept his job despite the Cardinals’ poor performance and a DUI conviction.

The Cardinals have said they’re confident the claims will be disproven.

Matthew Casey has won Edward R. Murrow awards for hard news and sports reporting since he joined KJZZ as a senior field correspondent in 2015.