PISCATAWAY, N.J. (April 5, 2013)--Tim Pernetti resigned Friday as Rutgers athletic director, two days after the basketball coach he hired was fired for abusive behavior during practices, a video of which sparked nationwide outrage.
In a letter of resignation sent to university president Robert Barchi on Friday, Pernetti said he hoped that his tenure at Rutgers "will not be judged by this one incident."
Pernetti said after seeing video of Mike Rice pushing, shoving and throwing balls at players his "first instincts ... was to fire him immediately," but he said he said the consensus at the time was "university policy would not justify dismissal."
Instead, with the approval of university president Robert Barchi, Pernetti, after a former employee gave him the video in late November, suspended Rice for three games, fined him $75,000 and ordered him to attend anger management classes.
The video broadcast Tuesday on ESPN included numerous clips of Rice at practice during his time at Rutgers, firing basketballs at players, grabbing them by their jerseys and yelling obscenities in addition to the gay slurs.