Chris Partridge entered the 2023 season as Michigan’s linebacker coach but was fired abruptly during the season. That firing came in the days leading up to the legal fight over Jim Harbaugh’s Big Ten suspension, a legal fight that was eventually called off.

Due to the timing of Partridge’s firing, speculation began to swirl about a potential connection to Connor Stalions and the sign-stealing investigation. On Monday, Partridge put out a statement addressing that speculation and the timing of his dismissal.

Partridge began by saying he waited to address the situation “out of deep respect” for Team 144. However, he said the reported nature of his dismissal has been inaccurately reported.

Here is what part of Partridge’s statement says:

“Unfortunately, the manner in which the termination of my employment and my role as a Coach at Michigan has been reported is inaccurate and has resulted in people speculating and making assumptions about my knowledge of, and connection to, the sign-stealing allegations within the football program. I want to be clear: I had no knowledge whatsoever of any in-person or illegal scouting, or illegal sign stealing. Additionally, at no point did I destroy any evidence related to an ongoing investigation.”

Partridge explained his dismissal — per UM AD Warde Manuel — was due to a failure “to abide by the University directive not to discuss an ongoing NCAA investigation with anyone associated with the Michigan Football Program.” He concluded by saying his dismissal does not diminish his love or support of Jim Harbaugh or the Wolverines in their pursuit of a title.