Following multiple allegations of bullying from former players, Boston University women’s basketball and head coach Kelly Greenberg have parted ways.
BU spokesman Colin Riley confirmed Greenberg’s departure.
“Coach Kelly Greenberg told administrators that she is stepping down from her position as BU women’s basketball coach, effective immediately,” Riley said.
In an article on ESPN.com published Tuesday evening, Greenberg spoke regarding her status with the team.
“I have determined that it is in the best interest of the university, the women’s basketball program and myself for me to resign my position as head women’s basketball coach,” Greenberg told ESPN through a spokesperson. “I do not agree with some of the findings of the review panel regarding my coaching style, which was intended to produce well-rounded athletes and a winning team. However, given all that has transpired, I do not believe it will be possible for me to continue as an effective coach at Boston University.”
Kate Fagan of ESPN originally reported that Greenberg had been fired. However, her article was edited to say that the school and Greenberg had parted ways, and it was later updated with the comments from Greenberg. Fagan’s original tweet saying that Greenberg was fired was deleted. Scott McLaughlin of WEEI.com said that Greenberg has resigned, and Bob Hohler of the Boston Globe reported that Greenberg and BU have gone separate ways.
Greenberg could not be reached for comment.
Greenberg had finished her 10th season as coach of the women’s basketball team and led the Terriers to a 186-127 record under her tenure.
On March 8, the Boston Globe reported that four players — senior guard Melissa Gallo, sophomore forward Dionna Joynes and sophomore guards Dana Theobald and Katie Poppe — would be leaving the team due to what they described as “emotional bullying.”
In an interview last month with The Daily Free Press, some of the players detailed the nature of the abusive behavior they claimed was exhibited by Greenberg.
“It was October 15, 2013, when I went to my coach’s office to explain that I was requesting a leave of absence,” Theobald said. “I explained yet again that I was really struggling with an eating disorder and depression and anxiety and that it was only being triggered through this program. All she had to say was, ‘you look horrible out there, absolutely horrible.’”
Theobald also told The Daily Free Press that although she was receiving treatment from Student Health Services for her eating disorder, Greenberg repeatedly gave no support, telling her “It’s not my problem.”
Gallo, who was a significant contributor on this year’s BU squad that went 13-20 and reached the semifinals of the Patriot League Tournament, documented similar treatment.
“My coach would say, ‘you need to grow up, you’re the most selfish person on the team,’ all this negativity that had nothing to do with basketball,” Gallo told the Daily Free Press. “… I told her I was speaking to someone in Student Health [Services] … She told me I was high maintenance for having depression. She attacked me on a personal level, saying things like, ‘definitely change your hair, I hate that low bun,’ or, ‘you look sick and should put on some makeup’… She abused her powers.”
Joynes told the Boston Globe in the March, “Giving up a $60,000-a-year scholarship is the hardest thing I’ve ever done; I hate that I’m not in school, but it had to be done. My spirit was broken.’’
The Boston Globe reported similar accusations against Greenberg in 2008 from that then-freshman guard Jacy Schulz and then-sophomore forward Brianne Ozimok. Both players transferred from the program.
After the initial report in 2008, in an internal review, BU Athletic Director Mike Lynch said in a statement that the complaints “helped Coach Greenberg appreciate that her style has been difficult, and that she has also made substantive mistakes that she deeply regrets.”
When the most recent allegations were reported, the University established a three-person administrative team to investigate the claims.
Todd Klipp, Boston University senior vice president, senior counsel and Board of Trustees secretary authored a statement on Boston University’s website last month regarding the claims.
“We take these allegations very seriously, and we will look into them promptly, thoroughly, and in an unbiased manner.”