Sports

Ex-UF women’s hoops coach accused of abuse

Multiple players accused former Florida women’s basketball coach Cam Newbauer of creating a toxic environment during his tenure, including intimidation, verbal abuse and racist comments.

Players went on the record with their allegations Monday in a story published in the school’s newspaper, The Independent Florida. The story also detailed multiple instances when players or their parents went to administrators with concerns well before Newbauer offered his resignation last July.

In a statement released Monday, Florida athletic director Scott Stricklin acknowledged concerns were brought to administrators, and Newbauer was asked to make “corrective actions.”

“It is our responsibility to provide a championship experience with integrity, along with the necessary support, for Gators student-athletes and staff,” Stricklin said in the statement.

“The culture of the women’s program under head coach Cam Newbauer described in The Independent Florida Alligator article is in no way consistent with the values of the University of Florida.

“At times during Coach Newbauer’s tenure there were concerns brought to our attention. Each time, additional information was sought, and these concerns were addressed directly with Cam as we required corrective actions and outlined clear expectations of behavior moving forward. Additionally, the UAA provided enhanced administrative oversight and presence within the program and sought anonymous feedback directly from student-athletes and staff.

“Ultimately, we did not see the required improvements, and following discussions with Coach Newbauer he made the decision to resign.”

Newbauer went 46-71 in four seasons as head coach, with zero NCAA Tournament appearances. When he resigned, he cited personal reasons. Newbauer was Stricklin’s first hire at Florida, in March 2017. Though Stricklin confirmed in the statement he knew about the allegations, he still gave Newbauer a contract extension through 2025, which was announced only six weeks before the resignation.

“Cam is building his program the right way and making steady progress,” Stricklin said when the extension was announced. “It’s important that he have the time needed to continue that progress.”

In the Alligator story, players detailed multiple instances when Newbauer threw basketballs at different players, including one at a player’s head and another at a player’s injured leg. Multiple players described verbal abuse and bullying, in which Newbauer belittled them for not being smart, not deserving of their scholarships or always complaining.

“He would make them cry,” former player Cydnee Kinslow told The Alligator. “Push until they cried, whatever it was, like, he tried. There’s a breaking point for people and pushing them through a wall to make them stronger. And then there’s what Cameron Newbauer did.”

Kinslow also detailed what she found to be discrimination against Black players, including an instance when Newbauer asked her to change clothes to cover up tattoos. In another instance, one former player recalled Newbauer asking assistants to take two Black freshmen shopping because he did not think their clothing was appropriate.

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