sudden decision to resign as the women's golf coach at Georgia last week followed complaints from players about his inappropriate sexual comments and jokes, according to documents obtained yesterday by the
McCorkle's resignation was announced May 7 and came 3 days after a memo in which he was told he would have to go through extensive anti-harassment training and would be suspended without pay for July. McCorkle instead quit, but athletic director Damon Evans said he would remain employed in another undisclosed job with the athletic department.
In the memo, University of Georgia executive director for legal affairs Steve Shewmaker told McCorkle several players had complained about the behavior of the SEC co-coach of year.
McCorkle said yesterday he was not asked to resign, but acknowledged the "situation has placed a cloud over the program and I felt like it was in everyone's best interest for me to step down."
"In my tenure at Georgia I have unintentionally made comments that have made some of my players uncomfortable," McCorkle, 44, said in a statement. "I want to be clear in saying that this was not my intention or desire."
McCorkle was said to have shared a sexually explicit Paris Hilton video from the Internet with the team. Players reported McCorkle shared remarks about bras and underwear color. Other comments were more explicit, referring to male anatomy. There was a mention by one player of inappropriate physical contact.
"He is randomly rubbing your back or flipping hair, or pat on butt - and otherwise not think anything about it - but with all the other stuff feels wrong," the unidentified player wrote.
The university's investigation began in April. Art Leon, the father of Georgia's top player, Taylor Leon, told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution his complaints to Evans led to the investigation.
"I'm the person that initiated it," Art Leon told the paper. "He doesn't need to be a coach of women's golf anywhere. He got what he deserved."
Taylor Leon, the SEC player of the year, helped the No. 3 Bulldogs advance to next week's NCAA Championships in Daytona Beach, Fla. Assistant Veronique Drouin is the interim coach.
McCorkle led Georgia to the 2001 NCAA title, after taking Arizona to the 2000 title. He said last week he was leaving the team to assist his wife, LPGA golfer Jenna Daniels, with her career.
In other college news:
* The openly gay coach of the Missouri men's lacrosse team was told his contract will not be renewed after nine seasons. Team leaders said Kyle Hawkins was dismissed because of his job performance, not his sexual orientation. Hawkins recently completed his first season as head coach after publicly disclosing his homosexuality. The team went 6-9.
* Clemson track coach Marcia Noad told her athletes that becoming pregnant could jeopardize their scholarships, but the school said no students lost their aid and the policy was later dropped. The warnings came to light Sunday when ESPN, citing an anonymous female athlete at the school, reported that at least seven current and former Clemson athletes had abortions for fear of losing their scholarships. An athletic department spokesman said the department removed Noad's guidelines before the 2006 fall semester.
* Jai Lucas, the McDonald's All-American and son of former NBA player and coach John Lucas, picked Florida over Kentucky and Oklahoma State. The 5-10 guard attended high school in Bellaire, Texas, near Houston.
* Circular Quay, who finished sixth in the Kentucky Derby, is expected to join the Preakness field for trainer Todd Pletcher. Pletcher, who went 0-for-5 in the Derby, also will enter King of the Roxy.
* An Australian swim meet will test a morning final format for the first time, simulating the schedule requested by NBC for the Beijing Olympics.
* Italy's Olympic Committee recommended the Italian Cycling Federation suspend Ivan Basso for admitting involvement in the Spanish doping scandal. The committee's anti-doping prosecutors also recommended rider Michele Scarponi be suspended. *