Iowa Asst. Chris Doyle Put on Leave After Ex-Players Said He Made Racist Remarks

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorJune 6, 2020

Iowa strength and conditioning coach Chris Doyle walks on the field before an NCAA college football game between Iowa and Northern Illinois, Saturday, Sept. 1, 2018, in Iowa City, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Charlie Neibergall/Associated Press

Iowa football head coach Kirk Ferentz told reporters Saturday that strength and conditioning coach Chris Doyle has been placed on administrative leave, per Scott Dochterman of The Athletic.

Dochterman reported that numerous players have spoken out in recent days against the highest-paid strength coach in college football for racist remarks. An independent review will be conducted to investigate the allegations.

Dochterman wrote Saturday that "several players" have said Doyle mistreated them, with ex-linebacker Reggie Spearman saying, "I personally believe Doyle and Kirk from my own experiences aren't inclusive and understanding of young black athletes."

James Daniels, a starting offensive lineman for the Chicago Bears who played at Iowa from 2015 to 2017, tweeted: "There are too many racial disparities in the Iowa football program. Black players have been treated unfairly for far too long."

Former Iowa cornerback Emmanuel Rugamba provided one example in response to Daniels:

"I was lifting in the weight room and one of the lifts we had to do was open and close your hands in a bowl of rice, while walking to the bowl of rice one of my black teammates and close friends just left the rice station and was at the bench rack.

"After benching there was some rice left back on the bar. Coach Doyle then says, 'wtf is this sh*t clean it up.' The player walks over to clean it up and walks away from Doyle. Doyle then says, 'why you walking wit all that swagger I'll put you back on the streets.' The kid comes from a happy home with both parents.

"A separate incident happened before one of our team lifts. He asked the same player where he was the night before the player says, 'my girl house.' Coach Doyle then pulls his pants halfway down to sag off his but turns his hat backwards puts one hand in his pants and starts to strut while mocking the player saying 'I was at my giiirrrlllss house.'"

Another alleged incident took place roughly a decade ago, per Iowa walk-on Terrance Pryor, who tweeted Doyle told him: "Maybe you should take up Rowing you know? Oh wait, Black people don't like boats in water, do they??"

Doyle has been with the Iowa program since 1999, when Ferentz took over the Hawkeyes.

Per Dochterman, Doyle has been "admonished" by the university before after he made players go through a 100-squat workout in Jan. 2011, leading to 13 players landing in the hospital with rhabdomyolysis. Per Dochterman, Ferentz awarded Doyle with the "Assistant Coach of the Year" award at an I-Club event that spring.

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