Coach Q out at Syracuse

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The Juice Online

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Aug 2, 2021, 2:23:31 PMAug 2
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Ira Berkowitz

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Aug 2, 2021, 2:25:52 PMAug 2
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Whoa…that’s big news.

Was going to email folks about Tyler Lydon who has said tomorrow nights TBT game will be his last game. Seems he has some serious knee and hip issues that will require surgery.

Ira

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Linda Tatar Landau

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Aug 2, 2021, 2:32:27 PMAug 2
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They had to do this. Even if innocent. But there was too much for him to be totally innocent. I have some great candidates in mind. Would love to get Tammi back or Felisha Legette from Buffalo. 



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William Grammaticas

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Aug 2, 2021, 2:34:09 PMAug 2
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Investigation on Q didn't take long.  Not surprised about Tyler as he didn't seem to have much hops on rebounding and blocking shots. Happy he has a chance to share a million.




From: the-juic...@googlegroups.com <the-juic...@googlegroups.com> on behalf of Ira Berkowitz <i...@moncominc.com>
Sent: Monday, August 2, 2021 2:25 PM
To: Juice Online <the-juic...@googlegroups.com>
Subject: Re: [The Juice Online Discussion Forum] Coach Q out at Syracuse
 

Linda Tatar Landau

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Aug 2, 2021, 2:36:25 PMAug 2
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Not the investigation. That is still ongoing. He and Wildhack came to a "mutual decision" that it would be best for the program.

Craig Weinstein

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Aug 2, 2021, 2:43:27 PMAug 2
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Interesting how Wildhack didn’t thank Q in the statement.

 

Tyler also didn’t love playing basketball.

 

From: the-juic...@googlegroups.com [mailto:the-juic...@googlegroups.com] On Behalf Of Ira Berkowitz
Sent: Monday, August 02, 2021 2:26 PM
To: Juice Online
Subject: Re: [The Juice Online Discussion Forum] Coach Q out at Syracuse

 

Whoa…that’s big news.

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Edwin Brooks

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Aug 2, 2021, 2:48:31 PMAug 2
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You'd have to think Tammy Reiss and Felisha Legette are the first two calls Wildhack makes. Reiss might make the most sense since she was most recently with the program, and there'd likely be more continuity. Craig W., I'm assuming you have some knowledge on which to base the statement that Tyler doesn't love playing basketball? At this point, with the constant pain, I'd assume it was a challenge to even play in the TBT. I'm guessing you know something we don't though. I'm guessing if BA wins, Devendorf will be retiring too.  Hopefully McCullough can cap this tournament off with another good game. He could be playing himself back into the NBA.



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Linda Tatar Landau

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Aug 2, 2021, 3:17:45 PMAug 2
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Friends of mine involved with SU basketball and in the coaching world have already reached out to Tammi asking her to apply. 

DSafetyGuy

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Aug 2, 2021, 3:19:35 PMAug 2
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Two things that were real problems that are not subjective - exaggerated/lied in his bio and hired an assistant coach who had a sexual harassment complaint and lawsuit filed against him by players.

Jim Stechschulte

Edwin Brooks

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Aug 2, 2021, 3:19:46 PMAug 2
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She'd be great for the job. Filled with positive energy and a top player herself, she knows first hand what the players are going through. I'd imagine they'd have to buy out URI. Hopefully SU doesn't cheap out.

DSafetyGuy

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Aug 3, 2021, 9:50:42 AMAug 3
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New article at The Athletic today, detailing what university officials knew about Hillsman and when.  Complaints from players going back to 2009.  A couple excerpts:

From 2009-2010:

"At one point in the practice, Hillsman grew frustrated, stopped the session and sent his players to the baseline for a series of punishing sprints.

After the players finished a set, Troya Berry, a forward from Flint, Mich., stood gasping for air. Diagnosed with asthma after she arrived at Syracuse, she kept an inhaler near a water cooler on the sideline. Fighting for breath, Berry walked from the baseline to grab her inhaler, when Hillsman yelled at her: “If you use that inhaler, you’re not playing in the Pitt game.’’"

------

"A short time after that practice, Lampkins went to her apartment and wrote an anonymous letter to a Syracuse compliance officer. She detailed the incident with Berry as well as a grueling, and what she considered excessive, practice earlier in the season that included extensive work with medicine balls. She then asked her father to send the letter from an anonymous email account to protect her identity. (Lampkins would later detail the allegation about Berry and the inhaler in a signed affidavit as part of a Title IX complaint.)

Days later, Hillsman gathered the staff and players, ostensibly for a film session. Instead, he referenced a letter to compliance, vowing to find the “rat in the room,” Lampkins says. The focus was not on what happened at the earlier practice, how Berry had been denied her inhaler, it was instead on who dared to blow the whistle on the coach."

-----

"In 2009, a departing player sat down for an exit interview with Catherine Cornwell. Cornwell served on the faculty oversight committee, which reported directly to the university chancellor.

The player says she informed Cornwell of some of the incidents she witnessed during her four years at Syracuse, including how during a team huddle an angry Hillsman made like he was going to punch one of her teammates, his clenched fist stopping inches before making contact. She told Cornwell she believed that Hillsman tried to control their lives, driving by their apartments late at night, for example, to make sure they were not out socializing. She said he belittled players to others, often loudly enough so that the player he was criticizing could hear. The player told Cornwell that she felt as though the insults became more personal as her career progressed, and the attempts at humiliating players in front of the team became more direct."

From 2019:

"During the 2018-19 season, at the beginning of one practice, Hillsman berated the players, accusing them of trying to ruin his and his family’s life, three people present told The Athletic. Through his shouts, players discerned someone had made an anonymous complaint about Hillsman to compliance.

“Compliance went straight to him and told him what the player said instead of investigating it themselves,” one former player says. “It was the power dynamic where he would say like, ‘Y’all think you can go to them? They called me the second you told them.’”"

From 2020:

"Another player says that following the 2019-20 season, (Kim) Keenan-Kirkpatrick reached out to her, saying she wanted to have a conversation before the player left campus. A meeting was scheduled, but Keenan-Kirkpatrick canceled it. When the player showed up at the gym for the rescheduled meeting, the player says Keenan-Kirkpatrick never showed. When the player left the gym, needing to get to a class, she says she ran into Keenan-Kirkpatrick in a hallway. Keenan-Kirkpatrick said she would reschedule but never did. “I don’t know if it was really an excuse, or if she just didn’t really want to hear what we had to say,” the player says. “Because at that time, I was ready. … I was ready to tell her, ‘This is not normal.’”"

-----

"A player later filled out a 35-question survey about her experience at Syracuse provided to her by the university in which she asserted the program needed to correct conflicts and tensions between players and coaches.

The 11th question of the questionnaire was: How would you evaluate your athletic experience at Syracuse University? She selected “poor.” When asked to provide comments, she wrote: “Really unhealthy culture. Male dominant and power hungry.”

The 13th question was: If you were being recruited by Syracuse University, would you choose SU? She selected “definitely no.” In the comments section, she wrote: “I would literally have chosen any other school than this one. … The leadership in the women’s basketball program is the worst I have experienced and I wouldn’t wish for any player to go there.”

The 19th question asked: What are the major weaknesses of your coaching staff? Her answer: “Ego, manipulation, controlling, disrespectful to women/girls, anger issues, mood swings, gas-lighting, lying, emotionally abusive, not caring, doesn’t communicate, doesn’t follow through, empty threats (fear tactics), anytime any girl is talked to, we are disrespected in some way.”

No one from the university followed up with her, she says. She spoke with the law firm investigating the program in June and says she told them what she told The Athletic."

Jim Stechschulte
 

Linda Tatar Landau

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Aug 3, 2021, 11:22:16 AMAug 3
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I am pretty sure that Kim is also being let go. But I will be pretty pissed off if she is the fall "gal". Q bullied her also, and she never got any support from the male dominated staff above her. She really tried to talk to the players and to talk to Q.  I spoke to Kim a couple of times, including a text yesterday while she is in Japan at the Olympics. I don't think they let her do anything about it. 

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DSafetyGuy

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Aug 3, 2021, 11:45:23 AMAug 3
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Rick Burton was also mentioned as a university executive who who knew what was going on in the program.  That player, who has transferred, did a virtual exit interview with him after this past season and said he "was indifferent about" what was going on and no one from the university followed up with her after telling Burton that:

"she never felt appreciated as a student-athlete and Hillsman sewed team division with favoritism for some while devaluing others. She said he seemed unwilling to connect with his players, was dismissive of them and belittled them with vulgar language that occasionally felt threatening. She said he demeaned student managers and generally created a culture so unhealthy she felt she had no choice but to leave."


Having read the full article, its hard to have a takeaway other than Hillsman had pretty much absolute control and power over the program, simply due to its/his success.  Gross and Cantor were both sent multiple letters by the parent of one of the players.  Gross also met with the parent and sent a letter in response that included:  "We are happy with the coaching results of the program, as we have had the best years in the history of SU women’s basketball under coach Hillsman’s leadership.’’

No surprise the university's law firm's investigation found nothing severe enough "to constitute a hostile environment under Title IX."

Jim Stechschulte

Craig Weinstein

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Aug 3, 2021, 12:18:50 PMAug 3
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Glad I didn’t invest (was asked to) in Rick’s upcoming documentary. My $$$ probably would have gone to his defense fund.

 

From: the-juic...@googlegroups.com [mailto:the-juic...@googlegroups.com] On Behalf Of DSafetyGuy
Sent: Tuesday, August 03, 2021 11:45 AM
To: The Juice Online
Subject: Re: [The Juice Online Discussion Forum] Coach Q out at Syracuse

 

Rick Burton was also mentioned as a university executive who who knew what was going on in the program.  That player, who has transferred, did a virtual exit interview with him after this past season and said he "was indifferent about" what was going on and no one from the university followed up with her after telling Burton that:

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Linda Tatar Landau

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Aug 3, 2021, 12:19:41 PMAug 3
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I also have questions about how they chose this particular law firm. Are they experienced in this type of inquiry? Because I know of another potential reason. 


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Edwin Brooks

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Aug 3, 2021, 12:35:53 PMAug 3
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Well if it's Coyne's firm, I 100% know why they were picked, and it was not neutrality.

DSafetyGuy

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Aug 3, 2021, 3:54:03 PMAug 3
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It was Bond, Schoeneck & King. 

"At the time (2010), the firm had been representing the university for years. Thomas Evans, previously the school’s vice president and general counsel, was named a senior partner at the law firm and put in charge of Syracuse in 1986."

Jim Stechschulte

Edwin Brooks

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Aug 3, 2021, 4:00:15 PMAug 3
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Well, they were obviously picked since they have represented SU over the years and any
"investigation" was aimed at protecting SU first and foremost as they are subject to suit under Title IX
for much of the content of the Athletic article. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if claims were confidentially settled
quickly to keep matters quiet. This was not an independent investigation of the program. This was an SU paid for
whitewash with the specific intent of separating SU from any actionable misconduct within the women's basketball program. The
goal was to be able to blame everything on Q and his staff while maintaining that the University hierarchy was in the dark the entire
time.

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Linda Tatar Landau

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Aug 3, 2021, 4:50:54 PMAug 3
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The firm investigating the women's basketball program is the LA office of O'Melveny & Myers. 

Edwin Brooks

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Aug 3, 2021, 5:44:23 PMAug 3
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That’s reassuring. No Syracuse area firm should be a part of the investigation. Representing SU is fine, but every local firm inevitably would have real or apparent conflicts of interest that would undermine the reliability of any conclusions reached in an investigation by that firm. 

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