NBC News has learned that former Penn State football assistant coach Mike McQueary filed a whistleblower lawsuit seeking $4 million from the university on Tuesday afternoon, claiming he was made a "scapegoat" for the university's failures to rein in a coach accused of sexual assault.
The lawsuit says McQueary is seeking $4 million. His base salary in 2011 was $140,400 plus bonuses and benefits, making his anticipated earnings over the next 25 years at least $4 million.
McQueary says he was placed on administrative leave a week after a grand jury found that university officials made false statements about what McQueary had told them.
Gary Schultz, a former senior vice president at Penn State, and Tim Curley, the former athletic coordinator, are accused of lying to a grand jury about what they knew of sex abuse allegations against Sandusky. The university has been paying the legal fees of other Penn State employees in the case, but not McQueary's.
McQueary was a graduate assistant football coach from 2000 through 2003, and then an assistant football coach until 2011.
He said he saw Sandusky engaging in sex with a boy who appeared to be 10 to 12 years old in the staff locker room of the Lasch Football Building. He said he reported the incident to his supervisor, Coach Paterno, the next day.
He said he relied on statements by the athletic director and senior vice president of the university that they would take action.
Reached for comment, McQueary said he would not be giving a statement of any kind and neither would his lawyers.
Penn State Communications Director David LaTorre said, "We won't have a comment."
McQueary also is seeking compensation for having his automobile privileges revoked, compensation for early withdrawals from his retirement account, bowl game bonuses from the 2011 season, back pay through Sandusky's trial, and his legal expenses.