US: Basketball coach sacked for abusive video to receive $100,000 bonus
Former Rutgers University basketball coach Mike Rice, who was sacked this week for subjecting students to physical and homophobic abuse, is set to receive a $100,000 (£66,000) bonus.
Mike Rice was suspended for three games, was fined $50,000 (£33,000), and was made to undergo management classes in December.
Thirteen faculty members on Wednesday demanded that the university’s president step down over the “inexcusable handling” of the Mike Rice case, which the university was aware of months ago, but the video of which did not publicly come to light until this week.
Rice is set to receive the $100,000 (£66,000) bonus for completing the season, and would not have been eligible for it if he had been fired in December, when the video first came to light at the university.
Last year he was paid $622,500 (£419,000) under his contract which included bonuses for graduating players, and for winning games. His contract, which would have lasted five years, called for the bonus if he completed the 2012/13 season.
The Associated Press reported that Jason Baum, a spokesman for the University’s Athletic Department, said the university would pay it because it was part of his contract.
On Wednesday, University President Robert Barchi, who took up his post in September, said he had agreed with the decision to suspend Rice originally, but that once he saw the video this week, he decided it was only appropriate to sack him.
Athletic Director Tim Pernetti, said in a statement on Tuesday: ”I am responsible for the decision to attempt a rehabilitation of Coach Rice. 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.”]
Rice on Wednesday delivered a highly emotional apology, during which he said: ”I have let so many people down”.
New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and NBA star LeBron James were among those who condemned the coach’s conduct.