Bethune-Cookman President: Ed Reed's Behavior Wasn't 'Aligned' with School's Values

Doric SamJanuary 24, 2023

ORLANDO, FL - JANUARY 02: Team Savage head coach Ed Reed during the 2020 Under Armour All-America Game on January 02, 2020 at Camping World Stadium in Orlando, FL. (Photo by Mark LoMoglio/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Mark LoMoglio/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

After Bethune-Cookman students voiced their displeasure over the dismissal of Ed Reed as the school's head football coach, interim president Dr. Lawrence Drake released a letter on Tuesday addressing the situation.

"To close the chapter on Mr. Reed, he was a tremendous player. Still, as we continued to observe him, we felt that his behavior was not aligned with the traditions of our founder Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune, and the university," the letter read.

RichardπŸ‡¬πŸ‡ΎJohnson @RJ_Writes

A letter from Bethune-Cookman interim president Dr. Lawrence Drake has been posted on the school's website regarding the Ed Reed situation following student protests on campus yesterday. <a href="https://t.co/VI7sLRPGUC">pic.twitter.com/VI7sLRPGUC</a>

On Monday, students engaged in an on-campus protest against the university's decision not to ratify Reed's contract despite naming him head coach on Dec. 27. The students called for the Board of Trustees' removal and also voiced their issues with the Florida university's facilities.

Nick Papantonis WFTV @NPapantonisWFTV

Bethune Cookman students are calling for the Board of Trustees' removal. They say campus facilities have many issues the school isn't addressing. Ed Reed spoke out and contract negotiations broke down, which was the "icing on the cake." <a href="https://twitter.com/WFTV?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@WFTV</a> <a href="https://t.co/mSrsUSik8l">pic.twitter.com/mSrsUSik8l</a>

Prior to his dismissal, Reed recorded a live stream on social media in which he heavily criticized the school's athletic facilities. The 44-year-old later apologized for his actions after receiving pushback for publicly airing out the university's deficiencies.

"I(n) regards to my social media and comments about the University, staff and other institutions, I would like to sincerely apologize to all BCU staff, students and alumni for my lack of professionalism," he stated. "My language and tone were unacceptable as a father, coach and leader. My passion for our culture, betterment and bringing our foundation up got the best of me and I fell victim while engaging with antagonists on social media as well."

After his 25-day tenure as head coach came to an end, Reed expressed his disappointment to no longer be in the position during a lengthy rant he posted on Instagram.

"My vision is probably moving too fast for a lot of people," Reed said in the video. "I'm not withdrawing my name as they say. They don't want me here. They do not want me because I tell the truth. It hurts. This hurt because people don't care about these kids like I do, and they should be the ones leaving, not me, because I don't want to."

On Monday night, the Pro Football Hall of Famer revealed that he turned down an opportunity to replace Deion Sanders at Jackson State in order to accept the Bethune-Cookman job.