Jerry Reighard, Central Michigan University's women's gymnastics coach since 1984, has two weeks to respond to 121 pages in findings stemming from a university investigation into alleged misconduct.
Specifically, Reighard has been accused by a current gymnast that he urged her to give false information to medical personnel so that she could participate in competition.
There was a report from the Morning Sun in Mount Pleasant on Wednesday morning that he had been fired. The Morning Sun, on Wednesday afternoon, removed the article without any explanation.
The article led to Central Michigan University issuing a statement Wednesday afternoon, with an update on the investigation into Reighard, who has been on paid administrative leave since Feb. 20. Reighard's wife Nancy, a volunteer assistant coach, was placed on leave at the same time he was.
The university says Reighard has two weeks to respond to the report, at which time athletic director Michael Alford will make a final determination about his status moving forward.
The university also said in a statement: "The investigation involved two dozen interviews, including with current team members. The final interview, with Reighard and his union representatives, occurred last Thursday. That meeting was delayed three weeks because one of the representatives was not available."
Alford has declined to comment beyond the university's statements.
Christine MacDonald, his longtime assistant coach, has been the interim coach since his leave and will coach the team Thursday in Ann Arbor, where it will face Illinois in the NCAA Championships.
This claim was the latest accusation against Reighard of improper dealings with medical personnel during his tenure at Central Michigan, according to his 1,353-page personnel file, which The Detroit News obtained last month via a Freedom of Information Act request.
In his performance reviews over the years, Reighard almost always received high marks in every category, with a couple notable exceptions — budget and medical areas. He often was cited for being over-budget. And numerous times, there were citations for his relationship with medical personnel.
In at least two performance reviews, in 1996 and 2006, his working relationship with university sports medical personnel was an area that was cited as "needing improvement." In a 1999 review, Reighard was noted as having been "better with this year's trainer."
Also on multiple occasions, according to the personnel file, Reighard was said to have gone around Central Michigan training staff and instead bringing in outside medical professionals, which goes against university protocol. In 2018, a team physician, Dr. Noshir Y. Amaria, even wrote a lengthy letter to Reighard, voicing concerns about the alleged practice. In 2017, similar claims were made against Reighard.
In his personnel file, there also were letters from parents and gymnasts. Some were supportive; others claimed Reighard and MacDonald were negligent when it came to dealing with injuries.
He also was cited by the university at least six different times for exceeding the weekly practice time limits allowed by the NCAA.
In 2017, he was cleared after an investigation of the Office of Civil Rights and Institutional Equity into a possible violation of the university's sexual-misconduct policy. The complaint involved a comment he made.
Reighard has led the program to 16 Mid-American Conference championships, including five straight from 2010-14 and in 2018. The Chippewas finished runner-up this season, under the interim coach. He's a nine-time MAC coach of the year. Reighard, a Westland native, holds two degrees from Central, a bachelor's in industrial education and technology and a master's in physical education.
Reighard earns a salary of $145,349 on a contract that was to run through April 30.