Iowa places strength and conditioning coach on administrative leave following complaints of racial disparities from former players
Iowa head football coach Kirk Ferentz has placed strength and conditioning coach Chris Doyle on administrative leave after several former players shared stories of racial disparities within the program. Several of those stories involved Doyle.
There will be an independent review into the allegations made by former players.
On Saturday evening, Ferentz released a video announcing the decision.
“This is a defining moment for the Iowa Hawkeye football program. Over the past 24 hours, I’ve seen some difficult and heartbreaking posts on social media,” Ferentz said in the video. “I appreciate the former players’ candor, and have been reaching out to many of them individually and will continue to do so moving forward to learn more about their experiences in our program.
“Many of the discussions have centered around our strength and conditioning program and coach Chris Doyle. I’ve spoken with him about the allegations posted on social media. They’re troubling and have created a lasting impact on those players. Therefore, Coach Doyle has been placed on administrative leave immediately while an independent review can take place. He and I agree that all parties have to have their voices heard. Then, a decision about how we move forward will take place.”
Several former players spoke out against the way Doyle treated them while at Iowa.
— Emmanuel Rugamba (@BooRadd_) June 6, 2020
Doyle & I actually got into a physical altercation over my goal playing weight. I wanted to gain weight. Doyle responds by grabbing me by the stomach and making some rude comments. I end up having the push him against the complex to gett off me #iowafootball
— Darian (@SuperCooper93) June 6, 2020
Played there 2007-2008 season….. Doyle made a comment about sending back to the GHETTO. I called him out on it in front of the entire team. I was suspended, KF told me I was out of line and needed to apologize for standing up for myself.
— Insurance Coach (@Coach2Insurance) June 6, 2020
Coach Doyle would go around stepping players fingers as they would warm up before a lift.
— Jaleel Johnson (@leellxvii) June 6, 2020
In other social media posts, former players have stated that Iowa needs to undergo a “cultural change.” Shortly after stating that Doyle would be placed on administrative leave, Ferentz said he would create an advisory committee to address those issues.
“There has been a call for a cultural shift in our program,” Ferentz said. “Therefore, I am creating an advisory committee chaired by a former player and comprised of current and former players, as well as departmental staff. This will be a diverse group. They will be able to share without judgments so we can all examine where we are today and how we can have a better environment tomorrow.
Below is the complete video released from Iowa:
This is a defining moment for the Iowa Hawkeye Football program: pic.twitter.com/ckEH39QVki
— Hawkeye Football (@HawkeyeFootball) June 6, 2020