The contract of Cal football’s strength and conditioning coach, Damon Harrington, was renewed June 28 prior to reporting on faculty concerns over a previous investigation involving the program, according to a statement from campus spokesperson Dan Mogulof.
That investigation was conducted in 2014 by investigators who had personal connections to Cal athletics staff and interviewed students selected by athletic program administration, the San Francisco Chronicle reported. Concerns raised by a letter from the Berkeley Faculty Association prompted UC Berkeley Chancellor Nicholas Dirks to order a new probe into the strength and conditioning program, with the status of Harrington’s contract still unknown to the public.
The association had requested that Dirks not renew Harrington’s contract until such an investigation could determine his role in two separate incidents of player harm. The first incident in 2013 occurred when campus freshman and Cal running back Fabiano Hale was injured in an altercation with one of his teammates, while the other incident saw campus junior and Cal football player Ted Agu die in 2014 after a rigorous training run.
“The chancellor has promised that he will, depending on the outcome of this review, be ready to make any necessary changes to our policies, practices, or personnel,” Mogulof said in the statement, adding that “decisions about the careers of campus employees should be based on solid information.”
Mogulof dispelled the notion that the campus’s admission of negligence in Agu’s death should be the decisive factor in the decision to renew Harrington’s contract.