Tim Pernetti resigned last week as athletic director of Rutgers University, but he will receive $1.2 million in a settlement with the school.
The former AD landed in the middle of a major controversy when a video surfaced featuring men's basketball head coach Mike Rice physically and verbally abusing players. Pernetti fired Rice and resigned shortly thereafter.
However, the Associated Press reports (via ESPN.com) that he will receive money and various other benefits in an agreement:
Under his agreement, Pernetti is to be paid his base salary of $453,000 per year through June 2014 and a one-time payment of $679,500 in the next month. He gets the money even if he takes another job.
He also gets his $12,000 per-year car allowance through June 2014 and health insurance and pension payments through October 2015. Pernetti also gets to keep his Rutgers-issued iPad and laptop computer.
In addition, the report states that Rice will maintain 75 percent of his salary after being fired "without cause."
The video of Rice throwing balls at players and yelling homophobic slurs during Rutgers practices came to Pernetti’s attention in December. At the time, he made a decision to suspend the coach for three games and fine him $50,000.
However, ESPN's Outside the Lines obtained the video and showed it to the public (via Don Van Natta Jr. of ESPN), causing an uproar from concerned viewers across the country.
As previously mentioned, Rutgers fired Rice as a result and Pernetti followed him out the door by putting in his letter of resignation. According to Jerry Carino and Keith Sargeant of USA Today, he stated that he regretted not firing the coach earlier:
As you know, my first instincts when I saw the videotape of Coach Rice's behavior was to fire him immediately. However, Rutgers decided to follow a process involving university lawyers, human resources professionals, and outside counsel. Following review of the independent investigative report, the consensus was that university policy would not justify dismissal.
The dismissal of both men and subsequent settlements should finally allow people to move on from this disturbing incident.
Of course, there is sure to be plenty of debate about how Rice and Pernetti made out following their roles in allowing this type of abuse to occur. Specifically, the head coach being given $1 million despite his firing, according to ESPN.
The ability to avoid lawsuits and appeals might have been worth that price to Rutgers, but only time will tell if the backlash from the event's conclusion make the school regret its decision.
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