Watch: Viral Video Prompts Rutgers to Fire Its Men’s Basketball Coach
A video showing Rutgers University men’s basketball coach physically and verbally abusing his players has prompted the school to fire him.
Mike Rice, 44, was terminated this morning after ESPN aired a video of him kicking and shoving players, throwing balls at them and calling them gay slurs.
Previously, the school had suspended Rice for his abusive behavior.
“When video excerpts of basketball practices were reviewed last fall by Athletic Director Tim Pernetti, he immediately notified me and sought the advice of internal and outside counsel,” Rutgers President Barchi said in a statement released today. “The university hired an independent investigator to look into this matter thoroughly. Based on the external investigator’s findings and recommendations, Tim and I agreed that Coach Rice should be suspended, penalized $75,000 in fines and lost salary, ordered to undergo anger management counseling, and put on notice that his behavior would be closely monitored. Tim Pernetti also made it clear to Coach Rice that there would be zero tolerance for additional infractions. Tim kept me fully apprised and I supported his actions.
“Yesterday, I personally reviewed the video evidence, which shows a chronic and pervasive pattern of disturbing behavior. I have now reached the conclusion that Coach Rice cannot continue to serve effectively in a position that demands the highest levels of leadership, responsibility and public accountability. He cannot continue to coach at Rutgers University. Therefore, Tim Pernetti and I have jointly decided to terminate Mike Rice’s employment at Rutgers.”
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