After the news that Gary Dolphin will be reinstated as the Voice of the Hawkeyes for next year’s basketball season, the Big Ten and the University of Iowa subsequently released a statement saying that Fran McCaffery will be suspended for Iowa basketball’s upcoming games against Rutgers and Wisconsin:
University of Iowa Director of Athletics Gary Barta announced on Wednesday a two-game suspension of head men’s basketball coach Fran McCaffery for unsportsmanlike comments directed at an official following Iowa’s loss at Ohio State Tuesday in Columbus, Ohio. The suspension includes Iowa’s next two games versus Rutgers (Saturday) and at Wisconsin (March 7).
The Big Ten Conference supports the University of Iowa’s suspension and announced that the institution will be fined $10,000 as a result of violating the Big Ten Sportsmanship Policy, in addition to issuing a public reprimand.
“Following the basketball game at Ohio State, Coach McCaffery made unacceptable comments to a game official in the hallway headed to the locker room,” said Barta. “Fran’s comments do not represent the values of the University of Iowa, Hawkeye Athletics, and our men’s basketball program.
“Fran immediately accepted responsibility for his comments and understands the severe implications of his remarks. Fran fully understands this suspension and penalty imposed by the Big Ten Conference. Fran continues to have my full support moving forward.”
“I am in total agreement with the suspension by Iowa Athletics and the fine levied by the Big Ten Conference,” said McCaffery. “My comments directed toward a game official were regretful. I apologize to Big Ten Conference officials, Iowa Athletics, my players and staff, and the tremendous Hawkeye fans. This behavior is not acceptable and I take full responsibility for my inappropriate comments.”
This is Fran’s second such suspension of his nine-year career at Iowa. Assistant coaches Andrew Francis and Kirk Speraw will assume head coaching roles for Rutgers and Wisconsin, respectively. This is presumably because each coach was responsible for scouting those opponents.
The incident that occurred in Columbus last night can be summarized as such:
Uh, wow. Iowa coach Fran McCaffrey was just screaming at an official walking down a hallway of Value City Arena. "You cheating motherfucker! You're a fucking disgrace!"— Kyle Rowland (@KyleRowland) February 27, 2019
Fran was apologetic when addressing the media:
"I'm a very passionate person...my emotions got the better of me. And I apologize for that. I regret that."@IowaHoops head coach Fran McCaffery addressed Tuesday night's incident and his two-game suspension: pic.twitter.com/eEedvpam8N— Big Ten Network (@BigTenNetwork) February 27, 2019
Despite the suspension, McCaffery will be in attendance for the game Saturday, perhaps as a concession to see off Nicolas Baer, the lone senior on the team, on senior night.
Barta: "What I've seen for 9 years behind the scenes ... nobody pays more attention to (players) like a father than Fran."— Chad Leistikow (@ChadLeistikow) February 27, 2019
McCaffery: When I raise my voice, it's "never personal."
We expect to see Fran back on the sidelines on March 10 at Nebraska in Iowa’s last regular season game of the year.