Texas Tech men’s head basketball coach Mark Adams has stepped down from his role days after he was suspended for referencing "slaves serving their masters" in a player meeting, per CNN.
Following an investigation, Texas Tech athletic director Kirby Hocutt determined the comment, which the school previously condemned as “inappropriate, unacceptable, and racially insensitive," was “unintentional and an isolated incident." Adams also apologized to the team immediately after making the comment to a player.
However, the head coach ultimately decided that the incident was too much of a distraction for the program, according to a press release announcing his exit on Wednesday (March 8).
Hocutt was initially notified of the incident last week and announced Adam's suspension on Sunday (March 5).
“Adams was encouraging the student-athlete to be more receptive to coaching and referenced Bible verses about workers, teachers, parents, and slaves serving their masters," the university said in a statement at the time of his suspension. " Adams immediately addressed this with the team and apologized."
According to Jeff Goodman of Stadium sports network, Adams said his comments weren't racist as he was quoting a Bible verse about how there is “always a master and a servant."
“I was quoting the Scripture,” Adams said, per Stadium. “It was a private conversation about coaching and when you have a job and being coachable.”
“I said that in the Bible that Jesus talks about how we all have bosses, and we all are servants,” Adams continued. “I was quoting the Bible about that.”
In Wednesday's statement, the coach said his “lifelong goal was to help and be a positive influence on my players, and to be a part of the Texas Tech men’s basketball team.”
“However, both the university and I believe this incident has become a distraction for the Texas Tech men’s basketball team and the university, which I care about so deeply,” he continued.
According to Fox News, Corey Williams was named interim coach of the Tech basketball. The team finished the regular season 16-16 overall after losing to West Virginia in the first round of the Big 12 Tournament on Wednesday.
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