MONTREAL – McGill University‘s football coach has resigned over what he characterized as a crisis of conscience, the latest fallout from a domestic violence scandal that has rocked the school’s athletics department.
Clinton Uttley wrote that statements made by McGill do “not represent my personal morals or values with regards to sport, recruiting, and life in general.”
For the first time, the player spoke with reporters, saying it was unfortunate that the resignation happened like it did.
He responded to McGill officials saying they don’t believe Guimont-Mota should have ever been a student at the school.
“I’m disappointed, because McGill’s a prestigious school, and they stand by Canadian constitutional rights,” he said.
Guimont-Mota has alleged that his partner was the aggressor.
His mother said Tuesday that she saw the alleged incident and corroborated his version of events.
He has a previous assault conviction on his record stemming from 2010.
On Sept. 26 the university released a statement saying that Guimont-Mota “should not have been invited to join our team. That was not in accordance with the values of our community.”
McGill officials subsequently added that Guimont-Mota should never have been invited to the university.
Tuesday, Uttley fired back in a public resignation letter, saying the university was aware of Guimont-Mota’s record when it allowed him to matriculate.
“At the time of his arrival, the university tolerated and accepted his presence and then proceeded to celebrate his accomplishments thereafter,” he wrote.
“For McGill University to say now that this individual should not have been allowed on our team in the first place because of his past deeply troubles me.”
He went on to write: “I cannot work for an organization that does not embrace equity and inclusiveness.”
Guimont-Mota is currently suspended from the football team, and his attorney says he is seriously considering pressing charges against the alleged victim.
He also says that should Guimont-Mota be acquitted, the player is considering civil action against the university, should he not be allowed back on the team.
The statements McGill made, which states Guimont-Mota shouldn’t have been a student in the first place were sent “out to all the faculty and students in the school. In our mind, this is damageable,” said Steve Hanafi, the player’s lawyer.
Another attorney, Philip Schneider, says Guimont-Mota may have a case.
“They are, from a university point of view, sentencing him before he’s found guilty of anything,” said Schneider.
“There is something called the presumption of innocence in Canada. It applies to McGill University too.”
McGill issued a short statement today in response to the resignation.
“We launched an in-depth review of our rules and regulations governing participation in varsity sports to ensure that all rules and regulations are aligned with and reinforce transparent decision-making, accountability and commitment to the values that define the McGill learning environment,” the statement reads.
Guimont-Mota is scheduled for a court date in February.