CMU fires gymnastics coach after investigation

An undated photo of former Central Michigan gymnastics coach Jerry Reighard. (Courtesy: Central Michigan Life)

MOUNT PLEASANT, Mich. — Central Michigan University has fired gymnastics coach Jerry Reighard after an internal investigation.

Reighard was placed on leave in February after being accused of telling an athlete to cover up concussion symptoms in order to compete.

A 121-page investigation report from the university’s personnel services department cited “egregious misconduct” in his efforts to undermine CMU’s concussion management plan.

The report says he created a hostile environment within the gymnastics program that contradicts CMU’s independent medical model.

The investigation involved two dozen interviews with team members, and medical and athletic training staff. Reighard received a copy of the report April 3 and had two weeks to respond.

Athletic Director Michael Alford says the report describes situations that could lead to an NCAA violation. The university has been in contact with the NCAA and says it will cooperate in self-reporting the violations.

Alford said he will conduct a national search for a new coach.

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