Columbia football coach Pete Mangurian has resigned, university president Lee Bollinger announced on Friday.
On Thursday, the Columbia Spectator reported that 25 Columbia football players wrote a letter to Bollinger alleging a series of grievances against Mangurian and calling for the coach's dismissal. The players later withdrew the letter.
In the letter, the players claimed that Mangurian pressures them to play with concussions and denies their concussion diagnoses. It also accuses him of "being physically abusive, alienating injured players and imposing drastic and unrealistic weight regimens."
"I have accepted Pete Mangurian’s resignation because we have all come to the conclusion that it would be in the best interests of Columbia Athletics," Bollinger said in a release. "Under Dianne Murphy, Columbia teams have built a new winning tradition across our men’s and women’s sports and we expect no less of our football program."
From a statement provided by Columbia on Friday:
"The university routinely reviews complaints and concerns raised by students, even those that have been withdrawn. While we don’t generally comment on specific cases under review, it is essential to note that Columbia adheres to a strict medical protocol regarding head injuries for all sports teams and our investigation has found no evidence to support an allegation of a departure from that protocol with our football players. We are part of the Council of Ivy Group Presidents which has taken a leadership role in addressing concussions in college athletics and we place the highest priority on our students’ health and safety."
Mangurian had served as Columbia's head coach since 2012. The Lions went 3-27 in his three seasons, including a 0-10 record in both 2013 and 2014.
He previously served as an NFL coach for a host of teams, including the Denver Broncos and New England Patriots.
*This post has been updated to include a response by the university
- Molly Geary