The head coach of the Yale women’s soccer team left the university this week after sexual misconduct allegations surfaced from when he coached at a nearby college in Connecticut a decade ago.
It was the second time in a year that the team’s head coach had left because of a scandal. The previous job holder was ensnared in the Justice Department’s sweeping Varsity Blues investigation into college admissions bribery.
As of Wednesday, the head coach, Brendan Faherty, was no longer employed by the university, Yale officials said in an email on Thursday confirming that his departure was prompted by a report in the student newspaper on his tenure at the University of New Haven.
The Yale Daily News reported that a former student athlete said that Mr. Faherty had demanded that she sleep in his bed and that he groped her breasts in 2009.
The report also said that another former player said she and Mr. Faherty had a consensual sexual relationship that lasted for several years. Both players were 18 or older at the time, according to the report, which was based on interviews with several women whom it did not name. Yale explicitly prohibits coaches from having sexual relationships with students, the student newspaper said.
Mr. Faherty, a resident of Guilford, Conn., has not been charged with a crime. He did not respond to multiple requests for comment by The Yale Daily News for its report, and phone messages left at his home on Thursday were not immediately returned.
Yale officials did not say whether Mr. Faherty, who was hired last December, was fired or resigned, but maintained in their email that the university had conducted a background check and careful review of Mr. Faherty’s previous employment before it hired him.
“Through the interview and vetting process, no information regarding these allegations was provided to the university,” Victoria Chun, Yale’s athletic director, said in a statement.
The university said it learned of the allegations against Mr. Faherty from the student newspaper on Monday. The report also said that Mr. Faherty, 41, the University of New Haven’s head coach from 2002 to 2009, drank alcohol with several of his student athletes while employed there.
“We fully support the women’s soccer team; I am meeting with them to offer resources during this difficult time and I look forward to charting a new path forward together,” Ms. Chun said. “We know change is hard, but also know the strength and resiliency of our women’s soccer team will shine through this difficult time. Our student athletes are at the center of our decisions, and we know this is the right path forward.”
Yale hired Mr. Faherty to replace the women’s soccer team’s longtime coach, Rudolph Meredith, who pleaded guilty in March to accepting more than $1 million in bribes from a parent to help get his daughter into the university. Mr. Meredith, who resigned last November, is awaiting sentencing.
The University of New Haven, a private institution that is less than five miles from Yale, announced Thursday that it had hired an independent investigatory firm to delve into allegations of “impropriety” involving a former employee. The university confirmed that The Yale Daily News’s report had prompted the investigation.
“There is absolutely zero tolerance for anyone who jeopardizes the safety or sense of self-worth of students, faculty, staff or any other member of the university family,” Steven H. Kaplan, the president of the University of New Haven, wrote in a letter to the university community on Thursday. “We will endeavor to find the facts. Within the legal constraints concerning confidentiality, we will share as much as possible. We will address any concerns uncovered by the facts.”
Mr. Faherty spent three years as the head coach of the women’s soccer program at Stony Brook University on Long Island before Yale hired him. In 2016, Mr. Faherty’s first year at Stony Brook, the America East Conference named him coach of the year.
Shawn Heilbron, Stony Brook’s athletic director, said in an email on Friday that the school conducted thorough reference and background checks before hiring Mr. Faherty.
“No concerns were raised at that time nor were there any issues during his tenure at Stony Brook,” Mr. Heilbron said.
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