The basketball coach at Rutgers has been fired today because he had the bad luck to have been caught on camera yelling at his players, pushing them, throwing basketballs at them, and, probably the worse offense, calling them politically-incorrect names that implied that they were gay (you know what I'm talking about). Here's the ESPN video:
Well. That certainly isn't ideal. But I also don't think it's the most horrible thing ever. People act like what this guy is doing is akin to Gerry Sandusky or some other child molester. It isn't. It probably is far out on the left side of the bell curve of coaching behavior, but it differs in degree, not in kind, from the kind of verbal and physical abuse/motivation that coaches routinely use with players. Remember: these are not little boys, they are men, who could just as easily be in boot camp at their age. They are on scholarship at Rutgers. It's a voluntary activity. So a coach speaking roughly to them or challenging their manhood isn't really that far out of the ordinary. Did he go too far? Probably. But I also guarantee you that if he had a good record over the past three years (they were just under .500 all three years), and if he had won the Big East or made the NCAA tournament, they would have found a way to defend his conduct as tough love that motivated his team to achieve.
Oh, and by the way... an enterprising reporter would ask if Rutgers had a buyout clause in the coach's contract where they had to pay him millions if he were fired for poor performance, but didn't have to pay if he were fired for personal conduct.