The University of Texas System regents have called a special meeting on Sunday to discuss recent coaching scandals at the system's flagship university, the University of Texas at Austin.
On Friday, UT-Austin Athletic Director DeLoss Dodds issued a statement revealing that Major Applewhite, the co-offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach, was involved in "inappropriate, consensual behavior with an adult student one time during the 2009 Fiesta Bowl activities."
The news came on the heels of a report that women's track coach Bev Kearney had an affair with a student athlete roughly a decade ago. Kearney resigned under pressure following her admission, but Applewhite remains employed.
In his statement, Dodds said he took immediate action upon learning of Applewhite's actions shortly after they occurred. That action included freezing Applewhite's salary and requiring him to go to counseling.
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"In determining appropriate discipline, we analyze the facts and circumstances surrounding the behavior and its relation to job responsibilities," Dodds said. "Major fully accepted his discipline, including counseling. We have high standards for behavior and expect our staff and coaches to adhere to them in all aspects of their lives. I believe that the appropriate discipline was taken in this case."
On Sunday, the UT regents will review the matter. According to a system press release, the agenda for the telephonic meeting calls for a closed-door discussion of "legal issues concerning individual athletics personnel at UT Austin, legal issues related to inappropriate relationships between employees and students, and individual personnel matters related to duties and assignments."
According to the schedule, the regents will end the meeting without taking any action as a result of their deliberations.
Gene Powell, the chairman of the board of regents, and UT System Chancellor Francisco Cigarroa issued a statement in advance of the meeting. "We are first and foremost concerned with the safety, health and well-being of our students on all 15 UT campuses and wherever they travel under the auspices of our institutions," they said. "We expect our coaches to adhere to the highest standards of conduct and lead by example. However, until such time as the board can fully understand the background surrounding this event and its moral and legal implications, we will have no further public comment."
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