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Oakland University says ex-coach Beckie Francis was fired for abusing players

Beckie Francis had 227–162 record as a head coach at Oakland before being fired in June. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio) Beckie Francis had a 227–162 record as a head coach at Oakland before being fired in June. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

Oakland University fired former women’s basketball coach Beckie Francis because she mentally and emotionally abused her players, was obsessed with her players eating habits and refused to follow orders to separate her religion from her coaching duties, according to a court filing.

The school fired Francis on June 12. The very same day her husband, Gary Russi, retired as the school's president.

A Wednesday hearing is scheduled on Francis' request for the school to release an unedited copy of its investigation report on her.

The Detroit Free Press reported this past summer that players complained because they were being emotionally and mentally abused by the coach.

GARDNER: Ex-Rutgers coach Mike Rice: ‘I was an idiot, but I never abused anybody’

More from the Free Press:

The two sides will be in court Wednesday morning to argue a motion filed by Francis last week to obtain an unredacted copy of the internal investigation report that led to her firing. The university has provided Francis with a heavily redacted version of that report “After the meeting where Oakland suspended her, (Francis) even sent a several page rebuttal to the reasons given for her suspension and review, which were duly considered along with her responses and explanations," the court filing stated.
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