Texas Wesleyan baseball coach Mike Jeffcoat told a player named Gavin over email that his program does not recruit players from Colorado because such players "have had trouble passing our drug test." Jeffcoat told Gavin he could thank his "liberal politicians" for his lack of recruitment from Texas Wesleyan.
Gavin shared the email with Denver radio host Darren McKee, who then shared it with the world.
The tweet took off from there, and on Wednesday night, Texas Wesleyan released the following statement:
We are aware of the email sent by our baseball coach, and the comments he made are in no way a reflection of Texas Wesleyan University, its values or its recruiting practices.
This is a personnel matter and it is currently under investigation. It is our University policy to not discuss personnel matters, but we want to reiterate that this email does not reflect our values and we do not condone discrimination. This includes discrimination on the basis of race, color, origin, ethnicity, gender, age, religion, disability or sexuality; or the political legislation of one’s home state. We are committed to providing an inclusive campus for all of our students, faculty, staff, visitors, potential students and their families.
By late Thursday morning, Jeffcoat was out of a job. Texas Wesleyan said it was also investigating Jeffcoat for a previous matter related to the NAIA's eligibility rules, but the Gavin email clearly forced the Fort Worth-based school to push its baseball coach out the door.
"Mike Jeffcoat is no longer an employee with Texas Wesleyan University," TWU president Fred Slabach said. "He was separated from the university due to the discriminatory remarks contained in an email to a potential recruit from the state of Colorado and for another factor that we have been investigating for the last week. This additional factor is an NAIA rule violation that has recently came to our attention."
Slabach went on to say that Texas Wesleyan does welcome students from Colorado and invited Gavin to enroll at TWU. “I am reaching out to him, hopefully today. If that young man or his family is watching today I want to make sure he knows that the comments contained in that email absolutely do not express the values of this university. And we would love to have Gavin here as a student.”
Jeffcoat pitched for four teams over a 10-year Major League Baseball career and had been Texas Wesleyan's baseball coach since 2002.