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Texas: Applewhite ‘engaged in inappropriate, consensual behavior’ with student

Major Applewhite AP

Well, this is interesting.

In a joint release that came completely out of left field, Texas athletic director DeLoss Dodds and Longhorns offensive coordinator Major Applewhite stated that Applewhite engaged in inappropriate, albeit consensual, behavior with an adult student during the 2009 Fiesta Bowl trip.

“Major Applewhite engaged in inappropriate, consensual behavior with an adult student one time during the 2009 Fiesta Bowl activities. After learning of his behavior later that month, I took immediate action to review the situation. We promptly initiated an inquiry with assistance from the university’s Legal Affairs office and other units outside of Athletics. Major admitted his inappropriate conduct and he was disciplined. In determining appropriate discipline, we analyze the facts and circumstances surrounding the behavior and its relation to job responsibilities. Major fully accepted his discipline, including counseling. We have high standards for behavior and expect our staff and coaches to adhere to them in all aspects of their lives. I believe that the appropriate discipline was taken in this case.”

Here’s Applewhite’s statement:

“Several years ago, I made a regretful decision resulting in behavior that was totally inappropriate. It was a one-time occurrence and was a personal matter. Shortly after it occurred, I discussed the situation with DeLoss Dodds. I was upfront and took full responsibility for my actions. This is and was resolved four years ago with the University. Through counsel I have worked with my wife and the incident is behind us. I am regretful for my mistake and humbled by this. I am deeply sorry for the embarrassment it has caused my friends, family, and the University. I appreciate all of them. I’ve learned and grown from this and look forward to my work at Texas.”

The incident happened roughly four years ago when Applewhite was serving as UT’s running backs coach, so why is this coming out now? That’s up to interpretation, but for what it’s worth the University of Texas’ Board of Regents has called a special meeting to discuss 1) Personnel Matters Relating to Appointment, Employment, Evaluation, Assignment, or Duties of Officers or Employees and 2) Consultation with Attorneys Regarding Legal Matters or Pending and/or Contemplated Litigation or Settlement Offers.

Also, as the Dallas Morning News points out, the statement comes just weeks after UT track and field coach Bev Kearney resigned because of a previous relationship with a female student-athlete.

As it appears today, the two cases seem different. We’ll probably find out soon enough if that’s true or not, but exactly who Applewhite had the inappropriate relationship with in terms of their role within the program could be an important factor in this situation moving forward.

(Applewhite statement courtesy of Bob Ballou, KEYE Sports) 

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41 Responses to “Texas: Applewhite ‘engaged in inappropriate, consensual behavior’ with student”
  1. jimbo75025 says: Feb 1, 2013 11:36 PM

    I don’t get it?
    Whil I suppose football coaches could be classified as “faculty”, even that is a stretch.

    If was a regular student not affiliated with the football program in any way (unlike the Petrino situation), why is this really big news other than the extramarital aspect.

    I can understand the other case where a coach was going at it with with one of their players, but unless Applewhite was rodgering one of the football players this one kind of gets a yawn.

  2. centexhorn says: Feb 1, 2013 11:39 PM

    Right before signing day, when we’re battling it out for some recruits? Seems fishy. Maybe some coaches are playing dirty? Trying to smear the program to sway the parents of some of these kids? Gary Patterson? Art Briles? Mark Helfrich? Which one of them was it?

  3. thefiesty1 says: Feb 1, 2013 11:42 PM

    You’ve got to be kidding me. Major? This story comes out a few days after signing day. Doesn’t make any sense, move on.

  4. deadeye says: Feb 1, 2013 11:43 PM

    I love how every time someone gets caught cheating, they are able to rehab their image with a litany of insincere cliches. Did Applewhite say all the necessary catch phrases to save his marriage, and more importantly his job? Let’s list them out and see:

    “regretful decision” – check

    “resulting in behavior” – check

    “totally inappropriate” – check

    “one-time occurrence” – check

    “personal matter” – check

    “it occurred” – check

    “upfront” – check

    “took full responsibility for my actions” – check

    “worked with my wife” – check

    “the incident” – check

    “I am regretful for my mistake” – check

    “humbled” – check

    “deeply sorry” – check

    “embarrassment it has caused my friends, family, and the University” – check

    “I appreciate all of them” – check

    “I’ve learned and grown from this” – check

    Wow, Applewhite’s hollow apology blows Bobby Petrino’s away in both length and variety. I think he’ll keep his job based on this statement. Well done Major, well done.

  5. centexhorn says: Feb 2, 2013 12:01 AM

    This guy should be able to bone all the students he wants as long as they’re not HIS students. He’s a damn football coach. It’s not like he’s a professor. He didn’t have any authority over her. He didn’t pressure her into it. It was consensual. This is stupid and a smear campaign.

  6. larrybrown43 says: Feb 2, 2013 12:03 AM

    Hmmm… this sounds like a total double standard. Bev Kearney gets canned 10 years after the fact and he gets off scott free. Sounds like the ex track coach has a case to me.

  7. bloodisred says: Feb 2, 2013 12:30 AM

    Straight bull. Kearney is forced out while Applewhite gets a slap on the hand?

  8. kattykathy says: Feb 2, 2013 12:30 AM

    Both adults.
    He was not a teacher or coach of the young woman.
    Whats the problem?

    But if he was married at the time, then yes it was inappropriate. However, that is an issue to be handled between the wife and him. This is not a University decision to judge what is right or wrong.

    But this is the other UT, and this program really doesn’t matter anyway.

  9. normtide says: Feb 2, 2013 12:34 AM

    Extra marital affairs are largely personal matters between spouses in my book. Consensual adults have sex, lots of it. In this case, neither can gain favor in university matters. Is it something a college would prefer didn’t happen? Certainly. Is it appalling? No. Of course, every other coach out there will be playing the role model angle.

  10. badintent says: Feb 2, 2013 12:39 AM

    You’ve got them all covered ! Except for

    “I did not have sex with that woman”Bubba

  11. cappa662 says: Feb 2, 2013 12:51 AM

    SOmeone caught him with another man prolly. Yuck!

  12. dmvtransplant says: Feb 2, 2013 12:57 AM

    So this comes down to 4 things really:

    1. Female student affair = no big deal

    2. Male student affair = In the Closet in any other profession it wouldn’t matter, but UT football it does

    3. Got a job for someone he was sleeping with = illegal

    4. Football player = Done

  13. takingbovadasmoney says: Feb 2, 2013 1:06 AM

    What was his name?

  14. deadeye says: Feb 2, 2013 1:54 AM

    Just for once, I’d love to actually hear a man who gets caught cheating say something like this:

    “I committed adultery against my wife, and I have asked for her forgiveness. My foolish behavior has nearly destroyed my family, and I now hope for a second chance to become the kind of husband I should have been all along.”

    Instead we get these equivocations:
    Adultery becomes an “incident”.
    Breaking the wedding vow is a “mistake”.
    Seeking forgiveness becomes “taking full responsibility for my actions”.
    Repentance becomes “worked with my wife”.
    Ashamed becomes “deeply sorry”.

    Oh, but there’s more. Major is sorry for the embarrassment it has caused, “friends, family, and the University.”


    How about being sorry for the emotional pain that you’ve caused to your family, or the humiliation you have caused for your wife. Listing friends and the university in that sentence is utterly callous. Does anyone honestly believe that Applewhite’s statement has even a shred of sincerity? It sounds like it was crafted by a college freshman majoring in media relations.

  15. jimbo75025 says: Feb 2, 2013 2:00 AM

    takingbovadasmoney says:
    Feb 2, 2013 1:06 AM
    What was his name?

    The lack of gender-specific language in the statement(s) was certainly interesting.

  16. sparky151 says: Feb 2, 2013 3:47 AM

    Unless the student was under Applewhite’s supervision, it’s probably no big deal. It sounds like Kearney has a legitimate gripe however.

    I’m not sure why the university has a blanket policy against coaches dating their players. Assuming the player is at least 18, the coach isn’t in loco parentis, and sexual harrassment laws cover unwanted advances. Thirty years ago when I was in college it was common for professors to date not only their former students but current ones too. Neither party felt the need to conceal it and it was only considered inappropriate to give unwarranted grades to a paramour.

  17. armstrongsmissingball says: Feb 2, 2013 7:30 AM

    Pillow biter

  18. dylude says: Feb 2, 2013 8:58 AM

    “But this is the other UT, and this program really doesn’t matter anyway.”


    “The other UT”

    Man that was a good laugh.
    Last I checked the last non-SEC team to win the national championship was “the other UT” and the top grossing football program for 3 straight years was also “the other UT” and I guess I should change my subscription to the “real UT network” instead of the Longhorn Network.

    Kattykathy is hilarious.

  19. stairwayto7 says: Feb 2, 2013 9:35 AM

    Adult student? So not Bevo, was it male or female?

  20. goodfieldnohit says: Feb 2, 2013 10:40 AM

    So a Texas Longhorn Track coach sexes up a student and gets fired.

    Major Applewhite does the same thing and gets a raise and a promotion.

  21. goodfieldnohit says: Feb 2, 2013 10:42 AM

    Applewhite’s wife was pregnant at the time as well.

  22. washstnative says: Feb 2, 2013 10:55 AM

    With a name like his you know he was bound to cheat…

  23. thraiderskin says: Feb 2, 2013 11:01 AM

    Initially I thought the whole situation was a bit odd, considering what had happened to Kearney, but after looking at a copy of the letter of reprimand from the office of the director at UT, I’m comfortable that this was handled as a one time, “reported”, error. In the letter it clearly states that another incident will result in harsher punishment and forced Applewhite into immediate counceling. (obviously I have no way of authenticating this letter, but it looks legit to me). While it may be ticky tacky, a one time failure looks like a mistake, versus a two time failure that looks like the start of a pattern.

  24. cometkazie says: Feb 2, 2013 11:06 AM

    I can think of two LSU coaches that were let go in similar circumstances, the women’s basketball coach and an assistant track coach. Both were involved with team members.

    I’ve followed Applewhite since his prep career at Catholic High in Baton Rouge. He’s been Mr. Clean so far.

    Stay tuned.

  25. florida727 says: Feb 2, 2013 11:25 AM

    #deadeye, best post of the day. Thanks. Totally agree. This is a matter between him and his wife. Period. End of story. And why is this now relevant four YEARS later? If his wife was willing to forgive him and work through it to save their marriage then I applaud HER for having a forgiving heart and a commitment to their marriage to stand by him. Their relationship will never be the same, but at least they’ll have a relationship. In a lot of ways, it may make him a better person. Divorce would have been the easy way out.

  26. dirtydrew says: Feb 2, 2013 12:46 PM

    Should have kept quiet. The morality judgement cast by the school is laughable.

  27. jamkarat says: Feb 2, 2013 1:42 PM

    @deadeye..Who anointed you the arbiter of what is/is not sincere? More snark and derisiveness than substance. Then you followed with a very vitriolic rant towards adulterers, which displayed a personal anger People make mistakes and unless you are above humanity you, too, have made mistakes. You’re just not important enough to have it publicized, so that judgmental people can discern motive and play judge and jury.
    I do agree it was a consensual act between 2 adults, and while possibly not appropriate under UT Regs, the timing is questionable, and further it appears the Uni is reacting to some type of outside pressure in an overblown fashion.

  28. deadeye says: Feb 2, 2013 2:22 PM

    “Who anointed you the arbiter of what is/is not sincere?”


    My common sense did.

    First of all, in a case of adultery it is best for the sake of the victim (his wife) to keep the whole thing secret. He should be wiling to walk away from his job to protect her from the disgrace he’s caused his family. Second, if she was willing for him to make a public statement to keep his job, then at least speak truthfully from the heart. Praise her for having the strength to forgive him. Don’t issue this P/C drivel. It’s carefully crafted to not offend anyone, but in the course of not offending it minimizes the harm and embarrassment he inflicted on his wife.

    I’m not judging him for what he did. I personally know people who have committed adultery and have been able to reconcile and save their marriage. I applaud that forgiveness every time it happens.

    What I hate are public statements about an incredibly sensitive issue that are designed to deflect guilt, reduce liability, and water down the consequences of what really occurred. It would have been better is no statement was ever issued.

  29. jamkarat says: Feb 2, 2013 2:56 PM

    See a thoughtful, intelligent assessment.

    You did have 2 earlier comments that were angry, judgmental rants, and to state your common sense gives you the right..sorry, your ‘common sense’ is subjective, and does not endow you with any divine rights.

  30. 11thstreetmafia says: Feb 2, 2013 3:29 PM

    So, was the other party a dude?

  31. deadeye says: Feb 2, 2013 8:15 PM

    “You did have 2 earlier comments that were angry, judgmental rants, and to state your common sense gives you the right..sorry, your ‘common sense’ is subjective, and does not endow you with any divine rights.”


    @jamkarat, if any of my previous posts were perceived as judgmental, or if those posts offended you in any other way, then I wish to acknowledge that they were inappropriate and issue an apology. Furthermore I want to convey that it is my deep desire to avoid all similar situations in the future by taking full responsibility for this incident. This regretful mistake will hopefully never be repeated, and if it caused embarrassment to CFT, my family, or the interweb, I want all of those entities to know that the embarrassment I caused was unintentional. I look forward to helping others to learn from this one-time lapse in judgement to betterment of all society.

  32. deadeye says: Feb 2, 2013 8:20 PM


    PS – I have not been endowed with any divine rights. I have been endowed instead with the First Amendment to the Constitution, which provides for me to speak my mind as I see fit. Hopefully you understand this simple concept since you obviously rely upon the same non-divine right to express your opinion.

  33. Deb says: Feb 2, 2013 8:50 PM

    Sounds as though the info was about to become public and Texas/Applewhite had no choice but to stay ahead of the story. It also sounds as though both Applewhite and the University have handled the situation as professionally as possible.

    No matter how any of us feel about the morality of someone else’s behavior, what happens between consenting adults–even married adults–is their own business. The only exceptions would be if the employer has a written policy prohibiting coaches/faculty from fraternizing with students … or if, like Petrino, Applewhite hired his lover into a high-paying job with the team that wasn’t merited by education or experience.

  34. stairwayto7 says: Feb 3, 2013 9:52 AM

    Lack of institutional control! 3 year bowl ban, loss of 7 scholarships yearly for 3 years and all wins earased from 2009-2012 season!

  35. rockgate says: Feb 3, 2013 12:54 PM

    As a Longhorn and a major (pun intended) Applewhite fan , I am sorry to learn of his indiscretion. However, from the statement he released, it at least appears that Major took ownership and may have approached Deloss Dodds himself to discuss his actions….we can’t know for sure.

    “….Shortly after it occurred, I discussed the situation with DeLoss Dodds. I was upfront and took full responsibility for my actions.”

    The only people on this thread that will question whether Major was genuine or not in his apology or those that do not know him.

    In any event, Deb’s post states it best. If no law or school regulation was broken, it’s simply nobody’s business.

    That said, as much as I like Major, I would be very upset if he was shown preferential treatment with regards to Bev Kearney. However, there is one major (sorry, I can’t help myself) difference between the two indiscretions. Bev Kearney was involved with one of HER track athletes…..Major was not. I’m not trying to justify what Major did or exempt him from criticism but that is a key point in differentiating the circumstances between the two incidents.

    Although Major more than demonstrated the quality of his character during his final year as a UT QB, his indiscretion also shows us that even the best suffers from human frailty and will make mistakes.

    Major AND his wife will deal with this for a very long time to come. They should be left alone to do so.

  36. Deb says: Feb 3, 2013 1:34 PM

    @rockgate …

    Good post. Just clicked the link above and read up on the Kearney story. Apparently Texas did introduce a written policy against coaches fraternizing with their athletes just before her affair began. According to that article, coaches who immediately report an indiscretion to their superiors–as Applewhite seems to have done–may avoid dismissal. And as you said, Applewhite’s situation did not involve a student athlete under his supervision.

    However, since Kearney’s brief affair had occurred and ended a decade earlier, and was revealed just as she was due to receive a large salary increase … her firing seems extremely vindictive.

  37. goodfieldnohit says: Feb 3, 2013 2:44 PM

    “Bev Kearney was involved with one of HER track athletes…..Major was not. ”
    Opie banged a student, who was a trainer for the football team. She was a subordinate in relation to Major’s position.

    And Texas fired the handicapped, black, lesbian track coach.

    Kearney just added another zero in front of the decimal point in her soon to be filed Wrongful Termination lawsuit.

  38. Deb says: Feb 3, 2013 3:03 PM

    @goodfieldnohit …

    Wait … Applewhite’s affair was with a student under his supervision? That was not clear from this article. Texas has a problem.

  39. goodfieldnohit says: Feb 3, 2013 3:12 PM

    Cleve Bryant
    Bev Kearney
    Major Applewhite

    It would seem that coaches at Texas use students for their own personal cat house.

  40. rockgate says: Feb 3, 2013 3:27 PM

    Deb, I gotta agree…..Kearney’s firing does seem vindictive and disproportionate…..and the UT Board of Regents will most likely have this pointed out to them in a court room (or at least they should).

    goodfieldnohit, I don’t know where you got your information about the student Kearney was involved with being a trainer on the softball team as the student’s identity was not released and every report I’ve read simply states she was one of Kearney’s athletes or track athletes. You may well be right….care to elaborate.

    As far as your observation…”And Texas fired the handicapped, black, lesbian track coach.” it’s more than a bit of a stretch to assume they fired her because she was handicapped, black, and lesbian as she was the Women’s Head Track coach from 1993 to 2013 and became handicapped in 2002 after an auto accident. She was also the first black head coach hired at UT. She was incredibly successful and in case you haven’t noticed, UT does like being successful….in spite of our football program for the last 3 years (and if you think that won’t change, you’re drinking electric kool-aid).

    Look, I agree that her termination was excessive but I seriously doubt it had anything to do with the reasons you’ve listed.

  41. mazblast says: Feb 3, 2013 9:29 PM

    The way I figure it, the sh** was about to hit the fan, and the university is launching a pre-emptive action to take the sting out of it. It’s what Notre Dame should have done before Deadspin revealed the Manti Te’o girlfriend fraud (after Alabama revealed the Manti Te’o player fraud).

    As for Applewhite himself, I’ve never been impressed. He always struck me as more catchy name than ballplayer, and as a coach he’s been more good ol’ boy working for his alma mater than anything else. Now he’s been revealed as more horndog than husband.

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