Rich Rodriguez has been fired as Arizona head football coach, amid an allegation of “workplace misconduct” that was reported earlier this evening.
USA Today‘s Dan Wolken reported that Arizona was “weighing” the possibility of firing Rich Rodriguez after a former administrative assistant threatened a lawsuit against him.
Less than an hour after Wolken’s report, Arizona officially announced that Rodriguez is out.
The school put out this statement on the situation:
— Damien Alameda (@DAlamedaKOLD) January 3, 2018
School president Robert C. Robbins and athletic director Dave Heeke also put out a joint statement to the University community, in which it detailed the information it has about the investigation into Rodriguez’s conduct.
Rich Rod's done, there's the official statement from Arizona pic.twitter.com/zobHRwc4BB
— BUM CHILLUPS (@edsbs) January 3, 2018
From that letter:
“In October 2017, the University’s Office of Institutional Equity retained outside counsel to investigate allegations of sexual harassment against Mr. Rodriguez, after a former employee in the Department of Athletics alleged that Mr. Rodriguez harassed her on multiple occasions. Like all University employees, Mr. Rodriguez is entitled to a fair investigation and due process and at no time has the University believed that Mr. Rodriguez posed any danger to a member of the community.
The law firm of Cohen Dowd Quigley was retained by the Office of Institutional Equity to conduct a comprehensive investigation into the allegations made by the former employee, and that investigation began in October. After her initial report to the University in October, the former employee retained counsel and declined multiple requests from the University to participate in the investigation into her allegations. In addition, she was unwilling to turn over communications that she alleged provided support for her allegations and recently filed a notice of a financial claim against Mr. Rodriguez.
The investigation, which concluded on December 28, 2017, found that the original specific harassment allegations against Mr. Rodriguez could not be substantiated based on the evidence and witnesses available to it. However, Arizona Athletics did become aware of information, both before and during the investigation, which caused it to be concerned with the direction and climate of the football program.”
Brett McMurphy reports that the decision to fire Rodriguez was made before Arizona’s appearance in the Foster Farms Bowl.
Source: Decision to fire Rich Rodriguez was made before bowl. Even a win in bowl wouldn’t have saved Rodriguez’s job
— Brett McMurphy (@Brett_McMurphy) January 3, 2018
We’ll have more as this situation develops.