A former student at the
College of Holy Crosshas filed a lawsuit claiming the school’s longtime basketball coach is so abusive his behaviour “exceeds the misconduct” of Mike Rice,
the New York Post reports.
New York City native Ashley Cooper filed a suit in Manhattan court against the Massachusetts college claiming it ignored women’s basketball coach Bill Gibbons’ loud and abusive antics.
The veteran coach’s “yelling, ranting, screaming and hysterics directed toward the Holy Cross players as well as game referees … prompted players on opposing teams to remark: ‘your coach is crazy,'” according to the suit obtained by the Post.
At one point, the suit says, Gibbons “violently yanked and pulled Cooper by her shirt collar and strongly squeezed the back of her neck causing pain while barking instructions in her face at close range.”
Cooper also claims that Gibbons hit another player on the back during a March 2013 game against Lehigh, ABC News reported. Her suit says the school’s athletic director was negligent by not taking any action against Gibbons, who has a 533-win record during his 28 years with Holy Cross, according to the Post.
The alleged abuse spurred her to transfer to NYU and give up college basketball, she told ABC. “I don’t want this to happen to anyone else ever again,” she told ABC.
Here’s what the school said in a statement to ABC:
The physical, mental and emotional well-being of our students is our highest priority at Holy Cross. We just received the lawsuit and are in the process of reviewing it. Ms. Cooper had brought her concern to the college and we investigated at that time. The lawsuit we received today includes a series of new allegations and we will now bring in outside counsel to review them.”
We reached out to him for comment and will update this post if we hear back.
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