College football season is right around the corner, but one less coach will be running out of the tunnel this season. Ole Miss head coach Hugh Freeze resigned earlier on Thursday, according to multiple reports.
The Associated Press reports that Freeze’s resignation comes “after university officials found a ‘pattern of personal misconduct’ that started with the school’s investigation into a call to an escort service.” His resignation comes after an NCAA investigation found 13 rules violations by the football program.
“In our analysis, we discovered a pattern of conduct that is not consistent with our expectations as the leader of our football program,” athletic director Ross Bjork said. “As of yesterday, there appeared to be a concerning pattern.”
“His privacy is important,” Bjork said. “The conduct was just not something we could continue with as our head coach,” via the AP.
The program was 39-25 during Freeze’s five-year stint as head coach, and recruiting had seen an uptick in talent under him. But what appears to have doomed Freeze is a one-minute phone call to an escort service, according to the AP report. The report continued, “Freeze’s university cell phone records obtained by The Associated Press show a 1-minute call made on Jan. 19, 2016, to a Detroit-based number. An internet search shows the number linked to a site that offers various escort services.”
“I’ve got no idea, to be honest,” Freeze told Yahoo Sports, which first reported the nature of the call. “I was in an 813 area code and that was a 313 number, I think that might have been a misdial. I don’t think there was even a conversation. There’s nothing to it.”
Sometimes the story is one-sided in nature, but the availability of information today is something that no one — not even an NCAA football coach — can run from.
There are plenty of troubled athletes in this country, but a troubled coach is the last person that should be teaching boys to become men.