Penn State Gymnastics Head Coach Jeff Thompson Fired
After a number of accusations by several former student-athletes, Penn State women’s gymnastics team head coach Jeff Thompson has been relieved of his duties. The decision comes less than a year after Thompson’s wife, Rachelle Thompson, resigned as associate head coach in June 2016 amid allegations of emotional abuse. The termination is effective immediately and a national search for a new head coach is now underway. Assistant coaches Kera Molinaro and Josh Nilson will fill the vacancy on an interim basis until a replacement is found.
Penn State gymnastics alumni have been calling for the resignation of both Thompsons for nearly a year. Among the many allegations made by athletes and parents, there are claims that the coaches forced athletes to practice through injuries and mocked them about their weight. Many of the young women developed eating disorders and depression, and one athlete attempted suicide. Finally, action was taken to remove Jeff Thompson.
This is an important step towards justice for former, current, and future athletes.
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