Texas Tech suspends coach amid investigation into ‘racially insensitive’ comment

Adams claimed that he was referencing a Bible verse about workers, teachers, parents and slaves serving their masters.

Associated Press, KHOU 11 Staff, CBS Sports

1:05 PM CST March 5, 2023

1:11 PM CST March 5, 2023

LUBBOCK, Texas — The Texas Tech Red Raiders suspended coach Mark Adams on Sunday over “an inappropriate, unacceptable, and racially insensitive comment” he made to a player.

Athletic director Kirby Hocutt said he was made aware of the incident Friday and issued a written reprimand before deciding to suspend Adams to investigate further.

The incident occurred in a meeting between Adams and a player, who wasn’t identified, the school said in a news release.

Here’s the full release from the university:

“Texas Tech University has suspended men’s basketball head coach Mark Adams in relation to the use of an inappropriate, unacceptable, and racially insensitive comment last week.

On Friday, Director of Athletics Kirby Hocutt was made aware of an incident regarding a coaching session between Adams and a member of the men’s basketball team. 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. Adams immediately addressed this with the team and apologized.

Upon learning of the incident, Hocutt addressed this matter with Adams and issued him a written reprimand. Hocutt subsequently made the decision to suspend Adams effective immediately in order to conduct a more thorough inquiry of Adams’ interactions with his players and staff.”

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The school didn’t say who would fill in for Adams as coach for the Big 12 tournament. Texas Tech is the ninth seed and plays West Virginia on Wednesday night in Kansas City, Missouri.

The 66-year-old Adams is in his second season. He replaced Chris Beard, who left to coach Texas, his alma mater. Beard was fired this season by the Longhorns after he was charged in a felony domestic violence case, but prosecutors later dropped the charge.

The Red Raiders made the Sweet 16 in Adams’ first season but started 0-8 in the Big 12 this season.

Adams told Stadium’s Jeff Goodman that he did not believe his comments were racist and defended the interaction by saying that he was quoting a verse from the bible.

The player affected complained about the interaction, but Adams did not apologize. Goodman also reported a separate incident earlier in the season in which Adams allegedly spit on a player. Adams denied that he spit on a player to Goodman, but admitted he slobbered on the player during the game after having a bad cough and going to the doctor.

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