Rutger’s University basketball coach Mike Rice was fired after a video was released of him abusing the players and using profane language. In the video Rice is physically and verbally abusing the players. The video showed Rice hitting and kicking the players and throwing basketballs at their heads. The practices looked more like dodge ball.
Former NBA player Eric Murdock was hired by Mike Rice as the team’s director of player development After witnessing the behavior of Rice, he informed the athletic director Tim Pernetti of his behavior.
Pernetti, suspended him for three games and fined him $50,000, after he was made aware of the video and gave very little explanation for the reason of his suspension.
Four months after the athletic director watched the videos, Mike Rice was fired. The announcement of his termination was made through the team’s twitter account, after the video went viral. “Based upon recently revealed information and a review of previously discovered issues, Rutgers has terminated the contract of Mike Rice.”
ESPN reported that the university has over 100 hours of the videos with Rice displaying this behavior, going back to 2010.
Mike Rice released a statement apologizing for his behavior,
“I’ve let so many people down,” “My players, my administration, Rutgers University, the fans. My family, who’s sitting in their house just huddled around because of the fact that their father was an embarrassment to them.
“It’s troubling, but I will at some time, maybe I’ll try to explain it, but right now, there’s no explanation for what’s on those films. Because there is no excuse for it. I was wrong. I want to tell everybody who’s believed in me that I’m deeply sorry.”
Rutgers University’s president Robert Barchi released a statement saying that Rice’s suspension was a “mistake”. He was also informed of Rice’s behavior had some decision in his punishment.
Pernetti claims he was responsible for trying to rehabilitate Rice, after watching the videos.
It’s reported that Mike Rice had a $750,000 contract with the university.
Athletic director Tim Pernetti resigned on April 5, 2013 after harsh media scrutiny. I expect more resignations in the future.
Abuse of any kind is unacceptable and he should have been fired months ago.
For me, this is the second college scandal involving abuse of the players by the coach, with Penn State being the first.