action:article | category:SPORTS | adString:SPORTS | zoneID:40

Home » Sports

January 09. 2014 2:38PM

Fired UNH women's hockey coach wants job back

DURHAM - The University of New Hampshire has had little to say since terminating long-time women's hockey coach Brian McCloskey last month.
 
According to a Dec. 6 press release issued by the university, McCloskey was terminated for inappropriate physical contact with a player.
 
On Thursday, Erika Mantz, director of media relations for the university, clarified the incident was not sexual in nature but involved physical contact on the bench during a game.
 
"The decision to terminate Coach McCloskey was not made lightly and was warranted," Mantz said in a prepared statement. "It is not appropriate for the university to comment further on a personnel issue, but the safety and well-being of all of our students is and must always be our number one priority."
 
But according to letters McCloskey and his attorneys have sent to UNH President Mark Huddleston and UNH Board of Trustees Chairman Pamela Diamantis, McCloskey wants a public apology from the university for how they handled the situation and reinstatement as coach.
 
In a redacted letter to colleagues published at fosters.com, he details the incident on the bench during a Wildcats home game, stating he reached out for the jersey of an uncooperative player at her shoulder and put her on the bench to reprimand her after she yelled and turned her back on him.
 
According to a letter sent from McClosky's attorney, Laura Studen, to Huddleston dated Dec. 6, McCloskey seeks an apology from the university for not clarifying the inappropriate conduct in press releases and statements claiming they harmed his reputation by the implications of a male coach inappropriately making contact with a female player.
 
His attorney states that as an employee with an unblemished record and distinguished 20-year career, McClosky deserved better from the university.
 
"Even assuming that his alleged conduct on Nov. 30, 2013, was as described in the termination letter (and it was not) the university's termination of his (McCloskey's) employment was not only a vast overreaction and an excessive response, but it was also improper and illegal," the letter reads.
 
Therefore, McCloskey requests immediate reinstatement.
 
In a letter to Diamantis received by the New Hampshire Union Leader, McCloskey requests that his attorney independently review the process the university followed that led to his termination.
 
Mantz did not respond Thursday when asked by email whether the university had responded to McCloskey's request for independent review.
 
 
McCloskey was an assistant with the men's hockey team at UNH before taking the helm of the women's program in 2002.
 
He guided UNH to five consecutive NCAA tournament appearances between 2006 and 2010 and berths in the Frozen Four in 2006 and 2008. Under McCloskey, UNH captured six Hockey East regular season championships and tournament championships in 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009.
 
McCloskey led the Wildcats to a school-record 33 wins in 2006 and 2008, the program's first perfect home record (17-0-0 in 2006), is a three-time New England Hockey Writers Association Coach of the Year (2003, 2006, 2009) winner and four-time Hockey East Coach of the Year (2003, 2005, 2006, 2009) winner.
 
In an interview with Foster's Daily Democrat, McCloskey said his students are the collateral damage of this situation.
 
"I think the real tragedy is what's been foisted on the players," McCloskey told Foster's. "It's egregious. I just don't know how much thought (the school) put into it. Clearly, looking at what's unfolded, it couldn't have been much. I feel terrible for the players, especially the seniors. It's a small class of three and I was close to them. That's a heavy burden for those kids to bear."
 
In the letter to Huddleston, Studen said by requesting reinstatement, McCloskey is not waiving his right to make claims against the university for defamation, breach of contract and wrongful termination.
 
As of Thursday afternoon, no filings had been made in Strafford County Superior Court.
 

 NH Sports Angle ╗ more
Links to news and happenings around the world of sports with a Granite State connection, updated daily.

Former All-Star Red Sox shortstop Rico Petrocelli: ôblessedö to have grown up in Brooklyn, now lives in Nashua

Toronto Maple Leafs left wing James van Riemsdyk, right, tangles with Boston Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask in the first period of Game 1 of their NHL Eastern Conference quarterfinals hockey playoff series in this 2013 file photo.

NH-based insurer sues NHL to limit its defense in players concussion lawsuits

A's claim former Fisher Cat Marcus Walden

Mariano Rivera's son to pitch for NH squad

Kevin Davis, CEO and president of Bauer Performance Sports, displays Bauer Hockey's latest innovation in hockey skates — the Vapor APX 2 with easily changeable skate blades in this 2013 file photo.

Exeter-based Bauer continues to expand beyond hockey with $330M purchase of baseball firm Easton-Bell

Hollis-Brookline head football coach resigns unexpectedly

New owners for Waukewan Golf Club

Matches announced for USA v. Cuba clash at Rockingham Park this weekend

Boston Marathon victim Jeff Baumann throws out the first pitch prior to the start of a game against the Philadelphia Phillies at Fenway Park last year.

Service's creed on display in support of airman affected by Boston bombing

40-year-old Manchester mechanical engineer wins MMA decision

New Hampshire Motor Speedway touts viability of casino site in Loudon

USA Knockouts Tamed in Cuba

U.S., Cuba boxers clash in Havana, U.S. bouts set for Rockingham Park in Salem

Lee USA Speedway opens season April 13

Newmarket woman plans world-record cross-country run for charity

CHIP KELLY

Is Chip Kelly racist?

World Series of Boxing event moved to Rockingham Park - USA vs. Cuba

Manchester man in top 30 candidates for Padres public address announcer

NH man helps MLB players deal with stresses on, off the field

Review of the 2014 Toronto Blue Jays Minor League Handbook

New Hampshire Motor Speedway may run Sprint Cup race in 2015 under the lights

How Boston lost the Patriots and 'New England' grabbed the NFL's 'Gold Standard'

Twin State Speedway gets new manager

Yale promotes former UNH coach to offensive coordinator

Bulldogs sign UNH's Nick Sorkin

MORE

 New Hampshire Events Calendar
    

   ╗ SHARE EVENTS FOR PUBLICATION, IT'S FREE!

Upcoming Events

 New Hampshire Business Directory

  

   ╗ ADD YOUR BUSINESS TODAY!