Rutgers Fires Coach After Practice Tape Airs

The Slatest
Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
April 3 2013 10:23 AM

Rutgers Fires Coach After Public Learns of Abuse School Already Knew About

Head coach Mike Rice of the Rutgers Scarlet Knights coaches against the Syracuse Orange at Louis Brown Athletic Center on Feb. 19, 2012, in New Brunswick, N.J.
Head coach Mike Rice of the Rutgers Scarlet Knights coaches against the Syracuse Orange at Louis Brown Athletic Center on Feb. 19, 2012, in New Brunswick, N.J.

Photo by Chris Chambers/Getty Images

Rutgers University fired men's basketball coach Mike Rice this morning. "Based upon recently revealed information and a review of previously discovered issues, Rutgers has terminated the contract of Mike Rice," the school said in a statement on Twitter.

Josh Voorhees Josh Voorhees

Josh Voorhees is a Slate senior writer. He lives in Iowa City. 

Those "previously discovered issues"? Rice's abusive behavior during team practices, during which he threw basketballs at his players, shoved them, used a variety of profane language including a gay slur, and acted generally like someone most parents wouldn't want anywhere near their children. The coach's actions were caught on tape, portions of which were aired by ESPN yesterday. The footage drew a quick rebuke from many sports columnists, and led New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie to issue a statement saying that he was "deeply disturbed" by the whole thing.

Advertisement

As the Star-Ledger explains, Rutgers had already reprimanded Rice for his actions last December, suspending him for three games without pay and fining him $50,000 after the school's athletic director, Tim Pernetti, was shown the damning footage. Once the tape went public, however, it appears as though Pernetti and the other school officials rethought just how inappropriate Rice's behavior was.

"I am responsible for the decision to attempt a rehabilitation of Coach Rice," Pernetti said in a statement this morning. "Dismissal and corrective action were debated in December and I thought it was in the best interest of everyone to rehabilitate, but I was wrong. Moving forward, I will work to regain the trust of the Rutgers community."

Here's some of the video:

***Follow @JoshVoorhees and the rest of the @slatest team on Twitter.***

This post has been updated with additional information.

TODAY IN SLATE

Culturebox

The Ebola Story

How our minds build narratives out of disaster.

The Budget Disaster That Completely Sabotaged the WHO’s Response to Ebola

PowerPoint Is the Worst, and Now It’s the Latest Way to Hack Into Your Computer

The Shooting Tragedies That Forged Canada’s Gun Politics

A Highly Unscientific Ranking of Crazy-Old German Beers

Education

Welcome to 13th Grade!

Some high schools are offering a fifth year. That’s a great idea.

Culturebox

The Actual World

“Mount Thoreau” and the naming of things in the wilderness.

Want Kids to Delay Sex? Let Planned Parenthood Teach Them Sex Ed.

Would You Trust Walmart to Provide Your Health Care? (You Should.)

  News & Politics
Politics
Oct. 22 2014 9:42 PM Landslide Landrieu Can the Louisiana Democrat use the powers of incumbency to save herself one more time?
  Business
Continuously Operating
Oct. 22 2014 2:38 PM Crack Open an Old One A highly unscientific evaluation of Germany’s oldest breweries.
  Life
Dear Prudence
Oct. 23 2014 6:00 AM Monster Kids from poorer neighborhoods keep coming to trick-or-treat in mine. Do I have to give them candy?
  Double X
The XX Factor
Oct. 22 2014 4:27 PM Three Ways Your Text Messages Change After You Get Married
  Slate Plus
Tv Club
Oct. 22 2014 5:27 PM The Slate Walking Dead Podcast A spoiler-filled discussion of Episodes 1 and 2.
  Arts
Culturebox
Oct. 22 2014 11:54 PM The Actual World “Mount Thoreau” and the naming of things in the wilderness.
  Technology
Future Tense
Oct. 22 2014 5:33 PM One More Reason Not to Use PowerPoint: It’s The Gateway for a Serious Windows Vulnerability
  Health & Science
Bad Astronomy
Oct. 23 2014 7:30 AM Our Solar System and Galaxy … Seen by an Astronaut
  Sports
Sports Nut
Oct. 20 2014 5:09 PM Keepaway, on Three. Ready—Break! On his record-breaking touchdown pass, Peyton Manning couldn’t even leave the celebration to chance.