Doyle Is Gone, But Barta Doesn't Foresee Other Changes

John Bohnenkamp

The independent review into Iowa's football program, released Thursday, led to four personnel reports summarizing allegations of mistreatment made against current and former employees.

Allegations of racial disparities within the program, made by former players on social media in early June, led to the independent review of the program by Kansas City, Mo., law firm Husch Blackwell.

Strength and conditioning coach Chris Doyle, the focus of many of the allegations, reached a separation agreement with the university on June 15 and is no longer with the program.

Allegations were also made against head coach Kirk Ferentz, offensive coordinator Brian Ferentz, and linebackers coach Seth Wallace.

But Iowa athletics director Gary Barta said on Thursday he was not planning on any further personnel changes.

"We will and have begun the process of internal follow-up," Barta said. "That internal follow-up will occur privately and it will follow university (Human Resources) policies and procedures."

Barta said he has read the reports.

Asked if he was the one who decided there would be no further changes, Barta said, "Ultimately, that's my responsibility. Obviously taking in all the information. It's not a done situation yet, but I felt confident enough to share with you today that we don't have any changes in employment in terms of who's here and who's not. But the follow-up is still ongoing in terms of moving forward.

"But I did feel confident, and yes, that's my responsibility. Certainly in one case, if it's an employee that reports to me or reports to Kirk, we'll talk those things through, but ultimately, yes."

Doyle was placed on administrative leave on June 7, one day before the returning football players were set for their first team meeting and voluntary workouts.

"I couldn't envision Chris being able to go in the room that Monday and being effective with our players, and then that judgment as I looked down the road further and just based on where we're at as a program in this period right now, I didn't think it was in anybody's best interest," Kirk Ferentz said. "Chris is an outstanding coach. I know with his next opportunity he's going to do a fantastic job, but everything is based on where you're at as a program."

"I think Kirk described pretty clearly the conversations that he had, what led to that point and just the decision at that point that in order to move forward — I think I even said it that way on June 15, in order to move forward, we felt this was the way we needed to go," Barta said of the separation agreement with Doyle. "I still feel like that was the right decision. I don't know if it's based on a report, but I still feel like that was the right decision."

Because he is the head coach's son, Brian Ferentz reports directly to Barta. His name has come up in speculation in the past about who will take over as head coach when Kirk Ferentz leaves.

When Barta was asked specifically about Brian Ferentz, and if he would be comfortable considering him as a head coach, he responded, "I certainly have opinions about all of our staff. It's fine for you to ask, but I'm not comfortable sharing. I've watched Brian grow from being an offensive line coach, I've watched him grow into being an offensive coordinator, and I have appreciated a lot of that growth, but that's probably as far as I'll go right there. But he and I have talked a lot about his future over the years."

Pressed further, Barta answered, "Again, I'm just going to continue to move forward and have conversations with him privately about what his career goals are and any way that I can help as he's working toward those goals."

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Iowa athletics director Gary Barta speaks during Thursday's press conference in Iowa City. (Katina Zentz/Iowa City Press-Citizen for Imagn Content Services)
Comments (1)
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MarylandHawk100
MarylandHawk100

IMO the amazing thing is that no one is asking if Barta should step down. He totally botched the sexual harassment case against the band, botched the wrongful termination case, and the sexual assault case over the years. Now this and no one is asking for him to go?!?
Long past time for him to go.


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