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Coach gets fired for how he used a day off. Make sure you're on the same page with your AD

Last night I was listening to a secretly recorded conversation between a college coach, a Human Resources representative, and the college athletic director. Normally it's not something that would pique my interest, but after reading up about it, I found the entire situation surrounding that conversation to be a great lesson for coaches.

Coaches at every level need to make sure that you and your AD are on the same page...about everything. Otherwise, as ridiculous as the circumstances may be, it could cost you your job.

According to Deadspin, Matt Aguero, the head track and cross country coach at NAIA St. Gregory's University, located in Shawnee, OK was fired by his athletic director for running in the Boston Marathon during Easter weekend. The story gets more and more bizarre.

Aguero was at the conference track meet on both Friday and Saturday, and then flew to Boston on Sunday morning and ran the Boston Marathon Monday. With it being Easter weekend, the campus was closed, kids were at home, and practices were effectively cancelled. Aguero felt that he didn't need to notify his athletic director because Monday was a day off due to the holiday.

However, according to his athletic director, Dr. Jeff Potter, competing in personal events like that on your own time can "can take away the energy and commitment to a program". That's not a joke, Dr. Potter wholeheartedly believes that. After being initially told of his termination, Aguero requested a meeting with HR and Dr. Potter after he was able to gather his thoughts, he brought a tape recorder to that meeting because of the nature of the whole situation. Audio of that entire conversation is attached below.

It's hard for me to come up with something that this situation could compare to in a football context; but say you, or one of your coaching staff members took part in an alumni football game (which are becoming more and more popular) on scheduled off day, during his own free time, during your season. Is that grounds for termination?

It is worth noting that Aguero competed in the 2013 Boston Marathon and was suspended a week due to missing practice. That's a whole other conversation though. Your coach goes to the 2013 Boston Marathon, the stage a horrific bombing, and you suspend him when he comes back? Wow. I don't claim to have all the facts, I'm just getting them from the Deadspin article.

As ridiculous as this story is, we can all learn something from this. It's a great reminder to make sure you're cultivating a relationship with your athletic director and to constantly make sure you're both on the same page.

We're all grown men, with egos of some form, so disagreements and miscommunications are bound to occur when you work so closely, but you also need to make sure you know where your AD stands on matters like this so that you don't find yourself in a similar situation.

There's a ton more information, and an excellent summary of the tape recorded meeting here.