Regents break silence on Leach firing - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

1/7/10

Regents break silence on Leach firing

By James Clark | email

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - For the first time, Texas Tech Regents are speaking in detail about their feelings on firing of Coach Mike Leach. A statement from three Regents has appeared on the Texas Tech website.

"We have seen our alumni base become divided over the issue," writes Chairman Larry K. Anders. "It's easy to understand why some members of the Red Raider family are upset by his departure".

"It is apparent that Coach Leach's dislike for the student athlete and his family was the impetus for his misconduct," Regents Jerry Turner and John Scovell jointly write.  The statement continues:

"Reasonable attempts were made to allow Coach Leach the opportunity to address the issue with the student's family and assure that a similar incident would not be repeated.  His profane and defiant refusal to recognize and resolve the issue led to his suspension and ultimate dismissal."

And the statement further says, "We want the record to be clear for all to understand:  it was his poor judgment regarding the mistreatment of an injured player and his unwillingness to work with the University leadership that led to Coach Leach's suspension and termination."

Leach sees it differently. In a statement to NewsChannel 11 shortly after his firing he said Texas Tech had been working against him ever since his February 2009 contract extension.  Later on ESPN he went on to say more bluntly that Tech did not want to pay him up to $12.7 million over five years and administrators wanted to "steal" the money.

Questions have been raised as whether or not the University acted severely toward Leach only because allegations of abuse came from Adam James, the son of ESPN sportscaster Craig James.

The joint statement says, "No matter how popular and talented an individual might be, he is still part of a team and, as such, is accountable."

(CLICK HERE) to read the one page joint statement from the Regents.  

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