Four days ago, Art Briles was back. Back in college football, announced as the new offensive coordinator at Grambling State under head coach Hue Jackson.
But just as Briles was set to begin his first week in Grambling, he now finds himself back on the market. According to Pete Thamel of ESPN, Briles will no longer be the offensive coordinator at Grambling State.
Thamel reports that Briles resigned from the position, issuing a statement obtained by ESPN on his way out.
“Unfortunately, I feel that my continued presence will be a distraction to you and your team, which is the last thing that I want,” Briles said. “I have the utmost respect (for) the university, and your players.”
The Tigers’ hiring of Briles was to be his first collegiate job since being fired from Baylor in 2016. But the news of the 66-year-old’s return was met with criticism, due to the scandal that led to his exit from Waco.
He was fired after an investigation revealed that Briles and others in the athletic department failed to take action regarding sexual assault and sexual misconduct committed by members of the football team. Since then, Briles has had short coaching stints in the Italian Football League (IFL) and at the high school level in Texas.
Jackson, who is set to enter his first season as head coach of the HBCU, released a statement through his foundation Friday defending the hiring of Briles.
“The Hue Jackson Foundation has been dedicated to fighting against ALL forms of sexual abuse and exploitation as well as other forms of racial and social bias,” Jackson wrote. “We have a clear understanding of the role that coaches and others who have a position of trust play in the lives of those they meet. We also know and understand the process of identifying risks, helping others to heal, and the importance of prevention.
“We believe that through the hiring of Coach Briles and the well-developed programs we have in place, this hire will be instrumental in teaching others the importance of knowing how to prevent victimization, proper reporting procedures, provide adequate resources to individuals who have been victimized and develop strong law enforcement partnerships within the community.”
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