(NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ) – The Old Queens building on the Rutgers campus has seen a lot in its 200 plus years, but nothing like the last 24 hours.
The damaging video that surfaced on Tuesday of coach Tim Rice verbally and physically abusing players ultimately cost him his job. Rutgers President Robert Barchi sent out an email shortly before 10:30 a.m. announcing that the 44-year-old Rice was fired.
At Rice’s home there was no answer when a PIX 11 News crew knocked on the door.
There was plenty of response on twitter. New Jersey Governor Chris Christie one of those chiming in tweeting that he expressed his support of the firing calling it a “regrettable episode.”
On campus it seemed like a normal spring day in some parts but at “The RAC,” where the basketball team plays and practices, it was a completely different story.
A group of reporters and photographers stood watch hoping to catch glimpses or comments of the key players involved in the scandal. Among those on the lookout was Tyler Bartow, a writer for the Daily Targum. Bartow has attended more than 100 team practices while covering the team the past three years. He witnessed a bit of that fiery temper flare up, but added that nearly all of Rice’s volcanic eruptions took place away from eyes of the the media, “The majority of the footage that we did see occurred when media members weren’t in practice.”
At the students paper’s offices along College Avenue, managing editor Skylar Frederick told me the reaction by most is clear. Not only should Rice be fired, but so should Athletic Director Tim Pernetti who who examined the video last fall and only implemented a 3-game suspension, 50k fine and anger management counseling upon rice.
“A lot of people feel that it should go further and especially now that different claims are coming out with who knew what when. Everyone is kind of confused and a fair amount of people do feel that Tim Pernetti should also be fired,” said Frederick on between calls and emails to members of the student staff that operate the paper.
As of Wednesday night, Pernetti was still on the job and reportedly safe according to ESPN.
So what is the next move?
According to Illan Mazell, a respected Manhattan Civil Rights attorney, Coach Rice and Rutgers leadership may go from the court to inside one, “Where students are at school and they are subjected to pervasive and hostile harassment and that’s known to the school and the school didn’t take action, they potentially have a claim.”
Rice reportedly made $650,000 dollars last season.