On Friday morning, news broke that Rutgers University had made the decision to fire athletic director Tim Pernetti.
The decision comes at the tail end of a week of mayhem for the university and its men’s basketball program. Earlier in the week, video footage surfaced of head men’s basketball coach Mike Rice shoving, yelling derogatory slurs and throwing basketballs at players during routine practices. Rice was fired on Wednesday morning.
On Thursday, news also surfaced that Rice’s assistant coach Jimmy Martelli had also resigned. Video evidence showed Martelli doing the same things at practice and some reports even indicate that he was known as “Baby Rice.”
Well, to no surprise alongside the public push for more action, Rutgers made the decision to fire Pernetti, as well. Some faculty members at Rutgers, as well as politicians in the area, were calling for the university to act against Pernetti, so there’s no doubt that this was a good and necessary decision by the university.
Ironically enough, Pernetti is currently one of five finalists for the Athletic Director of the Year, but he can probably say goodbye to any chance of winning that award. Pernetti made the decision earlier this year to suspend Rice after seeing the video footage. The penalty however — was three games and considering the public outcry this past week — really did not match up to the actions.
While Pernetti was not the one who was at the center of this aggressive behavior, he did allow it to happen under his watch. In addition, he did not make a decision regarding Rice’s punishment that fit the bill in relation to his actions.
Amid the public outcry, Rutgers had no choice and made the right decision to fire Pernetti on Friday morning.
Update: Prior to a 1:00pm (EST) press conference, reports indicated that Pernetti resigned from his position, although earlier reports stated that he had been fired.
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