Texas Tech fires football coach Leach

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by JOSH HARVEY / WFAA.com Sports

wfaa.com

Posted on December 30, 2009 at 10:21 AM

Updated Thursday, Dec 31 at 11:18 AM

Poll:
Do you think Texas Tech coach Mike Leach should have been fired before a hearing?

Mike Leach has always been known to be an uncanny coach. His most recent incident at Texas Tech will be his last. The school has fired the coach after Leach was suspended by the university on Monday while they investigated allegations that he mistreated Adam James. James is the son of former SMU football player and current ESPN anaylst Craig James.

"We appreciate that the university conducted a fair and thorough investigation," said a statement from the James family. "From the family's point of view this has always been about the safety and well being of our son and of all the players on the team."

Earlier this year, Leach and Texas Tech agreed on a new contract that would pay the coach 12.7 million dollars over five years. The contract also included major incentives for reaching a BCS Bowl game and winning the national championship. He was due $800,000 after 12/31/09 if he was still the head coach at Texas Tech. Now, the Red Raiders will pay him $400,00 annually for the next four seasons.

Leach finished 84-43 as the head coach of the Red Raiders. Including a 7-3 record against Texas A&M and with a 2-8 record against the Texas Longhorns.

Leach is the second Big 12 coach to be told to pack his bags this month. Kansas' Mark Magino resigned after former players stated he was insensitive and made embarassing remarks. Leach quickly came to Magino's defense in the matter.

Leach summarized the matter as follows: "The mean man told some player something they didn't want to hear. Well, there's a mean man in Lubbock who tells players what they don't want to hear. That's just part of it."

The university has named defense coordinator Ruffin McNeill as the interim head coach who will lead the team in the Alamo Bowl on Jan. 2nd. The Red Raiders will take on Michigan State from the Big 10.

Craig James had been scheduled to work as an analyst for Saturday's Alamo Bowl, but he has been removed from the broadcast team after the controversy with Leach.

Texas Tech's recruiting class is No. 25 in the nation according to Scout.com. Stay with WFAA.com over the next couple of days to see if players open up their recruiting after news of Leach's firing.

Texas Tech will announce the firing at a press conference later today at 4:30.

The Associated Press contributed.

 

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