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Daniel Cohen

Daniel A. Cohen



3340 Peachtree Rd NE
Suite 2900
Atlanta, GA 30326-1092

P 470-832-7562

F 404-264-4033

Daniel A. Cohen’s practice encompasses decades of experience working with educational institutions and their athletics departments. A dynamic and well-respected lawyer, Dan has been involved in significant sports law and Title IX cases involving major universities and their athletics programs.


Daniel A. Cohen’s practice encompasses decades of experience working with educational institutions and their athletics departments. A dynamic and well-respected lawyer, Dan has been involved in significant sports law and Title IX cases involving major universities and their athletics programs.

Dan counsels universities, colleges and other educational institutions on Title IX athletics and sexual misconduct matters, athletics strategic planning, name, image, and likeness (NIL) compliance, litigation, sports law, labor and employment, NCAA compliance, school and university law, and the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).

With more than 20 years of experience in higher education athletics matters, Dan's Title IX practice is extensive. He performs athletics audits and compliance reviews, develops strategic planning initiatives, and represents schools in investigations, litigation, and appeals.

Notably, Dan maintains an active NIL practice, including drafting NIL policies for college athletics departments, advising universities on legal and equitable aspects of NIL programs and representing Division I institutions in NIL litigation.

In Title IX sexual misconduct matters, Dan drafts policies and procedures, leads extensive sexual misconduct investigation and adjudication trainings, and conducts investigations. He also litigates Title IX athletics and sexual misconduct matters on behalf of schools, including defending colleges against class actions and investigations by the federal Office for Civil Rights.

Dan has been appointed as a Special Assistant Attorney General by two states to represent their public universities in Title IX matters. Since 2019, he has represented universities in every Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) conference, as well as colleges and universities across 32 states and Washington, D.C., in Title IX matters, including major research institutions in 23 of those states.

Dan is a frequent industry speaker, giving presentations to the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA), National Association of College and University Attorneys (NACUA), LEAD1, Women Leaders in Sports, Win AD, and various collegiate athletic conferences. He has also led Title IX sexual misconduct trainings for multiple state college systems and individual schools.

Professional and Community Involvement

Member, National Association of College and University Attorneys (NACUA)

Member, NACUA Student Affairs and Athletics Program Committee

Member, National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA)

Member, National Association for Athletics Compliance (NAAC)

Member, Women Leaders in Sports

Board of Advisors Member, Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl


The Legal 500 United States Industry Focus: Education 2022-2023; Leading Lawyer 2023


Higher Education

  • Represented several dozens of universities regarding Title IX compliance issues, including defending universities subject to class action and other litigation and federal Office for Civil Rights investigations for alleged gender discrimination related to athletics and sexual misconduct matters.
  • Conducted and supervised Title IX audits and compliance reviews for several dozens of universities’ athletics departments nationwide.
  • Developed risk management and litigation avoidance strategies to deepen the legal aspects of schools’ strategic planning initiatives for multiple large Division I athletics departments.
  • Assisted state Attorney General’s office with U.S. Supreme Court amicus brief on a Title IX matter.
  • Represent public universities in In re College Athlete NIL Antitrust Litigation, pending in the Northern District of California.
  • Led due diligence reviews and constructed Title IX compliance strategies regarding NCAA governance issues and changing conference affiliations for athletics departments at the Division I and Division II levels.
  • Provided training to multiple state university systems and individual schools related to compliance with the 2020 federal Title IX sexual misconduct regulations.
  • Represented two sexual assault survivors pro bono in a case that proceeded to state supreme court related to student privacy rights (FERPA)
  • Successfully defended and advised several schools on NCAA compliance matters.

Business Litigation

  • Won motions to dismiss class action litigation filed against a public university system for alleged Title IX violations.
  • Defended companies subject to multi-district litigation, including one case that, after remand to the transferee court, went to trial and resulted in a defense verdict following a three-week jury trial.
  • Defense and prosecution in various employment and discrimination lawsuits, including prosecution of a gender discrimination case in federal court that resulted in a damages award following a bench trial.
  • Defense and prosecution of accounting and auditing malpractice lawsuits, including a prosecution that resulted in a jury verdict for the client following a three-week trial.

These matters occurred prior to joining Barnes & Thornburg LLP.

  • LEAD1 Annual Meeting, “Future Pathways in College Sports,” Sept. 19, 2023
  • NACUA Conference, "NIL Advanced Topics," June 29, 2023
  • NACDA Convention, "NIL and Institutional Involvement," June 13, 2023
  • NACDA Convention, “Title IX and NIL: 50 Years of Continuing and New Legal Challenges,” May 19, 2022
  • NACUA Conference, “Athletics Compliance in 2021-22: The Questions You Should Be Asking,” Nov. 11, 2021
  • Louisiana Board of Regents, Comprehensive Title IX Sexual Misconduct and Power-Based Violence Training, Aug. 17-18, 2021
  • NACUA Discrimination Law Conference, “The Role of Counsel in Sport Sponsorship Decisions,” April 15, 2021
  • LEAD1 Webinar, “The Effects of Title IX and its Implications on College Sports — NIL, Alston & Beyond,” March 16, 2021
  • Webinar, “Navigating and Implementing the New Title IX Rules,” May 20, 2020
  • NACDA Webinar, “COVID-19 & College Athletics: Cost Containment and Legal Landmines,” April 29, 2020
  • Journal of Accountancy Podcast, “How Much Are College Football Teams Worth?,” Aug. 29, 2019
  • NACDA Convention, Athletics Risk Management Programming, June 11, 2019
  • "NCAA Transfer Portal," NACDA Convention, June 9, 2019
  • Webinar, “The College Admissions Scandal: When Can a Donation Be Construed as a Bribe?,” April 16, 2019
  • University System of Georgia Conference, “Legal Affairs Athletics Review,” Aug. 2018
  • University of Memphis Title IX Conference, “Tipsy, Sloppy, Drunk or Wasted?,” July 2018
  • NACDA Convention, “The CFO's Critical Role in Achieving Title IX Compliance,” June 2018
  • Webinar, “Playing Both Ends of the Field: Athletics Strategic Planning to Achieve Offensive Goals and Legal Compliance,” May 2017
  • NACUA Title IX Workshop, “I Fought Authority and Authority Always Wins — Strategies for Pushing Back on OCR,” Jan. 2016
  • WinAD, “Full Cost of Attendance, Best Practices and Opportunities to Grow Incremental Revenue,” Sept. 22, 2015
  • Testimony at Hearing, U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, Title IX Athletics: Accommodating Interest and Abilities, 2007
  • LEAD1 Association, “Next Moves After the NLRB’s Dartmouth Men’s Basketball Decision,” April 2, 2024
  • LEAD1 Association, “Take It to The House? Legal Risks for Universities Bringing NIL Collectives In House,” Aug. 14, 2023
  • LEAD1 Association, “Co-Conspirators' Beware: Where the College Athlete NIL Litigation Stands and What Might Happen Next,” June 1, 2023
  • LEAD1 Association, “Supporting NIL Collectives … But Not Too Much,” April 1, 2023
  • LEAD1 Association, “Avoiding Imputed Liability Under Title IX For NIL Collectives’ Football Favoritism,” Feb. 1, 2023
  • LEAD1 Association, “Of Course There Are Guardrails – NIL and Civil Rights Laws,” Oct. 31, 2022
  • LEAD1 Association, “Examining University Trademarks and Protecting Your Brand in the NIL Era,” Aug. 31, 2022
  • The National Law Review, “President Biden Requires Review of Title IX Regulations, Gender Equity Policies,” March 12, 2021
  • NACDA, “Sports in Fall 2020? What are your legal protections if the event is cancelled? What are your legal risks if the event is held?,” June 26, 2020
  • Sports Litigation Alert, “Board of Trustees of the University of Arkansas v. John Scott, Jr.: Drafting Buyout Clauses Reflecting the Economic Realities of Today’s College Football Game,” Jan. 31, 2020
  • “Seventh Circuit Sidelines Claims That Student-Athletes Are "Employees" Under The FLSA,” Dec. 13, 2016
  • Legal Issues in Collegiate Athletics, “Clearing Up Misperceptions: Title IX's Application to Full Cost of Attendance Scholarships,” June 1, 2015
  • Scientific Evidence Review, “Chapter 11, Expert Evidence in the Eleventh Circuit,” Jan. 1, 2013
  • Scientific Evidence Review, Monograph No. 9, American Bar Association, "Chapter 11, Expert Evidence in the Eleventh Circuit," 2013
  • Indianapolis Star, “Butler faces complex issues in Title IX Compliance,” Jan. 1, 2012
  • Vanderbilt Journal of Entertainment and Technology Law, “Navigating into the New ‘Safe Harbor’ – Model Interest Surveys as a New Tool for Title IX Compliance Programs,” Jan. 1, 2005
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