TRENTON – Senator and former Governor Richard J. Codey today issued the following statement in response to the decision by the University of Tennessee to withdraw from a deal with former Rutgers University Coach Greg Schiano to serve as the head of the school’s football program:
“I am disheartened by the treatment of Greg Schiano by the students, the university community and officials in Tennessee. I am dismayed, but not surprised, by the White House press secretary’s uninformed comments that sought to validate the outrageous and unsubstantiated claims and that further inflamed the situation. The Good Ol’ Boys and Sarah Huckabee should be questioning their support of Roy Moore and not attacking a man that we know here is of the highest character and a role model and mentor to scores of his former players.
“Greg Schiano took a Rutgers football program that was at the bottom to national prominence during his tenure, and he did so with dignity and class. His character is unquestionable and his commitment to Rutgers’ program and to the athletes’ academics and mental and physical wellbeing during his time with the university was undeniable. He has said there is no truth to the claim that he saw anything at Penn State, and reports indicate there has never been a shred of evidence to support the allegation. Yet Tennesseans have seized on this rumor to sideline a deserving coach.
“The circus that ensued over the last 24 hours is a sad representation of the division in this country and the willingness by some to take down a perceived opponent ‘by any means necessary,’ made far easier by social media. I am truly sorry for Greg and his family, and I cannot help but wonder whether the motive behind this attack stems from him not being one of the Good Ol’ Boys, but rather a great guy. I wish Greg the best and I am hopeful that he will land at a job that is deserving of his character, commitment and talent.”