Hermann not stepping down from new role as AD at Rutgers

Hermann not stepping down from new role as AD at Rutgers

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Several former players from the UT women's volleyball team said Hermann was cruel when she coached the team 16 years ago. Several former players from the UT women's volleyball team said Hermann was cruel when she coached the team 16 years ago.

By SAMANTHA MANNING
6 News Reporter

KNOXVILLE (WATE) - Rutgers University's newly appointed athletic director Julie Hermann said she is not considering resigning from her new job with the school despite recently publicized allegations of emotional abuse against former players.

"Throughout my career, I have worked with an unwavering commitment to the interests of student athletes," Hermann said. "I have worked to demonstrate that women deserve places of leadership in university athletics and to ensure that student athletes are treated with the respect and dignity.  That is what makes the allegations made by some of my former student athletes at the University of Tennessee so heartbreaking."

Several former players from the UT women's volleyball team said Hermann was cruel when she coached the team 16 years ago.

In a letter obtained by the Star-Ledger, the girls said Hermann called them "whores" and said they were "learning disabled."

"She told us that we're fat, that we're stupid, we're alcoholics," former Lady Vol volleyball player Kelly Hanlon Dow told ABC News. "Not letting us shower or eat from our road trips from Florida to Tennessee."

"I was never notified of the reported letter outlining the concerns of some former athletes," Hermann said. "However, I am truly sorry that some were disappointed during my tenure as coach.  For sure, I was an intense coach, but there is a vast difference between high intensity and abusive behavior."

Hermann was named athletic director for Rutgers University less than two weeks ago in an effort to clean up the school's image following the release of video showing former men's basketball coach Mike Rice berating students.

The Newark-Star-Ledger report also revealed a 1997 lawsuit against UT for accusations that Hermann fired an assistant coach because she was pregnant.

"On the matter of the litigation, that issue was addressed many years ago and was known to Rutgers," Hermann said.

In a statement released Monday, Rutgers University President Robert Barchi spoke out in support of the decision to hire Hermann.

"Julie Hermann's appointment as the next director of intercollegiate athletics at Rutgers University followed a rigorous and consultative selection process to ensure we had the best person for the position," Barchi said.

"She ultimately emerged from a vetting process that involved multiple stakeholders from across the university and leaders in the sports community around the country… Looking at Julie's entire record of accomplishment, which is stellar, we remain confident that we have selected an individual who will work in the best interests of all of our student athletes, our athletics teams, and the university."

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