After nine years as head coach of the Dirtbags, Troy Buckley was terminated Thursday for exhibiting violence in the workplace, according to Long Beach State Athletics board of directors member Bruce DD MacRae. The 562 reported that the decision came after Buckley had to be physically restrained from fighting another university employee. Buckley was not physically confrontational with any student athletes.
“The investigation was brought to [athletics director] Andy Fee and it has been ongoing,” MacRae said. “[Fee] had to gather information from both sides and Andy [Fee] made the decision.”
Fee was not able to confirm or deny that there was work related violence.
“I do not take a decision of this magnitude without careful and thoughtful consideration and my decision is not based solely upon wins and losses, but much more,” Fee said Friday.
Junior designated hitter Jacob Hughey commented after Friday’s win against CSUN.
“First move was to kind of digest it,” Hughey said. “It was just kind of letting it register in my head. Andy Fee was clear to let us know that it was his decision and our record had nothing to do with it.”
Interim co-head coaches also commented at Friday’s home game on Buckley’s termination.
“For the head coach to get let go in the middle of the season, what happened — it put through people through a loop,” said interim co-head coach Greg Bergeron.
According to the coaches, the players have been emotional about Buckley’s sudden departure.
“We let everybody handle their emotions how they needed to,” said Dan Ricabal, co-head coach. “We told them ‘hey Andy Fee made a decision’ and we closed the book on that chapter and we started a new chapter today.”
Buckley was in his ninth season and finishes his career at Long Beach State with a 260-231-1 record. This season has seen the Dirtbags at its worst, starting off 0-10 and are currently 5-26. What was seen as a rebuilding year for Buckley has ended early.
Robert Hollar contributed to this story.