The clock is running for the College of Charleston men's basketball program with the uncertainty of head coach Doug Wojcik's future and basketball season fast approaching.
The school has not yet released its 2014-15 schedule, but last season the Cougars opened on Nov. 3. Men's basketball practice can begin 42 days prior to the team's first game, which means the start of practice is only about two months away.
College basketball coaches from across the country are currently gathering at showcase tournaments like the Peach Jam in North Augusta to identify future recruiting targets. Meanwhile, Wojcik is not being allowed on the road to recruit and must serve a one-month suspension without pay and undergo counseling for alleged verbal abuse of players.
Wojcik's s future came into question after a 50-page report surfaced alleging that the coach was verbally abusive. The report was compiled by Charleston attorney Christy Fargnoli, and included interviews with 12 former basketball players, 10 of them anonymous, other staff members and Wojcik. It was submitted June 26 to Kathryn Bender, senior vice president and general counsel for the college.
"All I can say is we're not answering questions about the men's basketball program," Mike Robertson, director of media relations for the school, said Wednesday.
Director of athletics Joe Hull referred questions to Michael Haskins, the school's executive vice president for marketing and communications, and Haskins was in meetings Wednesday and did not return phone calls.
Wojcik, who has three years remaining on his contract that pays more than $400,000 annually, also did not return phone calls. Wojcik's attorney, Scott Tompsett of Kansas City, said Wednesday he had "no comment on it other than what we've released."
Shortly after the investigation became public, Tompsett issued a statement saying Wojcik intended to fulfill his contract.
"I'm sincerely remorseful and apologize to those I've hurt," Wojcik said in the statement released by his attorney. "I've already started making amends and working on correcting my actions. The College and I are grateful these concerns were brought to our attention, and every effort will be made to improve relations between myself and all members of the men's basketball program."
Assistant coaches Ryan Freeberg, Joe Wallace and Antonio Reynolds Dean are handling the recruiting in the interim. Freeberg was hired as an assistant May 24, 2012; Wallace was promoted to assistant June 26, 2013; and Reynolds Dean was hired June 9, 2014.
The College of Charleston already has four signees for 2014-15, 6-6 forward Evan Bailey of Canton, Ohio; 6-7 forward Donovan Gilmore of Greensboro, N.C.; 6-10 forward Nick Harris of Dacula, Ga.; and 6-4 guard Cameron Johnson of Athens, Ga.
Wojcik, who was fired by Tulsa in 2012 after compiling a 140-92 record, was hired in April of that year to replace Bobby Cremins. Wojcik is 38-29 in two seasons at the College of Charleston.
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