University of Kansas Head Football Coach Les Miles Out After Allegations of Inappropriate Behavior
Les Miles and the University of Kansas "have mutually agreed to part ways effective immediately" after Miles, the school's head football coach, was accused of inappropriate behavior toward two female student workers at his former school, Louisiana State University. (Miles has denied the allegations.)
KU Athletics announced the decision on their website Monday, saying that the "terms of the agreement will be released in the coming days."
Jeff Long, the school's director of athletics, said in a statement that he is "extremely disappointed for our university, fans and everyone involved with our football program."
"There is a lot of young talent on this football team, and I have no doubt we will identify the right individual to lead this program," Long continued. "We will begin the search for a new head coach immediately with an outside firm to assist in this process."
He concluded, "We need to win football games, and that is exactly what we're going to do."
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In a statement on KU Athletics' website, Miles, 67, said it was "certainly a difficult day for me and for my family."
"I love this university and the young men in our football program. I have truly enjoyed being the head coach at KU and know that it is in a better place now than when I arrived," he continued of his departure.
"To our student-athletes, I want you to remember that you came to play for KU and earn a degree here," Miles added, concluding, "So, I implore you to stay and build on what we started and do all of the things we talked about doing together. There is a bright future for all of you and for KU Football."
Miles, who has served as KU football's head coach for two seasons after previous stints at LSU and Oklahoma State University, was initially placed on administrative leave last Friday after LSU released a report that, according to the Associated Press, said they'd considered letting the coach go back in 2013, when the sexual harassment allegedly occurred.
According to The New York Times, Miles' lawyer Peter Ginsberg denied the claims against his client, calling the decision by KU a "disturbing and unfair" reaction to "media blowback."
Ginsberg also said, the Times reports, that Miles "learned an unfortunate lesson eight years ago: His naturally open and trusting nature exposes him to false claims by people with a different agenda than his."
KU announced on Monday that "while a national search for a new head coach begins immediately, Mike DeBord will continue to serve as the acting head coach until an interim head coach is determined."
If you or someone you know has been a victim of sexual abuse, text "STRENGTH" to the Crisis Text Line at 741-741 to be connected to a certified crisis counselor.
If you or someone you know has been sexually assaulted, please contact the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673) or go to rainn.org.
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