Judge Rules In Favor Of Fired Delaware Coaches In Discrimination Case

  0 Carly DeMarque | February 28th, 2018 | College - Women's Indoor, Division I Mid-Major, News

Two former University of Delaware coaches that were fired in October 2016 have been found by a judge to have sufficiently demonstrated that they were discriminated against by virtue of age, sexual orientation and marital status. The two coaches, Bonnie Kenny and Cindy Gregory, lodged a lawsuit against the University last year after contending that they were fired without cause.

Despite the judge ruling in favor of the two coaches, U.S. District Judge Richard G. Andrews ruled on Delaware’s behalf by granting a motion to dismiss Kenny and Gregory’s allegations that a violation of due process occurred. The ruling indicated that they were fired without cause and that was acceptable because Kenny was still being paid through the conclusion of her contract in June 2020, while Gregory did not have the same protection in her contract.

Next in the process is the evidence-gathering stage that will last another 6 to 8 months and will likely end with a trial. During this next phase of the process, it will be looked into more closely if the two were discriminated against in their firing.

The original complaint stated that Kenny was the fourth gay female coach over the age of 50 to be “forced out” by Delaware since 2010.

Kenny originally filed discrimination charges in February. In response, the university cited the recent losing seasons of the Blue Hens as a cause for Kenny and Gregory’s terminations. According to the complaint, however, those were not given as reasons “when UD forced them to resign under duress.”

Delaware had a 253-199 record under Kenny—a winning record, but nothing stellar. The 2007, 2008, 2010, and 2011 teams qualified for the NCAA tournament but have struggled since, going 11-17, 15-17, and 12-17 in the most recent seasons.

On top of a lack of success on the court, of the fifteen of Kenny’s recruits from the last three seasons, six had left the program as of last fall. During her tenure, parents and players sometimes found her and Gregory’s methods unappealing, one former player going as far as saying it was a “bad environment that was rooted in manipulative and abusive techniques preying on players’ emotions.

Now, the program is being led by Sara Matthews who led the team to a dismal 5-21 record in 2017.

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About Carly DeMarque

Carly DeMarque

Carly DeMarque has been involved with competitive volleyball for the majority of her life, playing competitively at the club and collegiate level for 15 years and coaching club for five. Now a retired Division I volleyball athlete out of McNeese State University, she continues her volleyball enthusiasm by stepping back into …

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