And, thus, one of the biggest scandals to rock Rutgers University ends.
Tim Pernetti tendered his resignation today, just two days after Mike Rice was fired for throwing basketballs, kicking and pushing, and using homophobic slurs. Pernetti's resignation comes with President Robert Barchi's blessing. But the AD didn't leave without firing off one last round from his chamber. Pernetti admitted his first instinct was to fire Rice, but he was told not to by Human Resources and Rutgers' lawyers.
Once again the Scarlet Knights tried to save themselves some money, because firing Rice at that time would have cost them 1.6 million dollars. Now, Rice is still fired without cause, but the shrapnel that comes from this scandal may cause the university a ton more.
Meanwhile, Barchi tap danced his way through a drawn out press conference, saying--basically--he was informed by not in on the whole process until late Tuesday night. At the same time, early reports say the whistle blower, Eric Murdock, was suing the school for wrongful termination.
Pernetti, the beloved athletic director, had an outpouring of support on Twitter, in news articles, and TV programs, but it wasn't enough to save him. Someone had to fall on the sword, and Pernetti was the one to do it.
Now the hand wringing begins for Scarlet Knights fans, many of which say they will pull their donations.
But, the wound is still raw.
Rutgers Athletics will still go on, moving toward the Big Ten. They will find a new athletic director, and considering it's likely Barchi stays in power, he will probably be one who supports big time college athletics. The football program, Rutgers' crown jewel will be fine for the near future, with tons of talent and a state of the art recruiting complex.
As for basketball, soon it will be time for another fresh start. But this is the program that will clearly suffer the most, at least in the near future. Because there has to be a search for a new athletic director, the search for a new basketball coach will be put off. Depending on the length, many of the best candidates will either be picked up or tied to their current jobs. And the current players will probably start jumping ship if they are not appeased of the search for a new coach.
The funding for the renovation of the RAC will likely dry up as well. It appears the basketball program will continue to be dormant for the near future.
But that's the story for another day.
Today is the story of a good man who fell on the sword because he tried to rehabilitate when the school wouldn't let him do what was right.