Hugh Freeze has broken his silence and praised God after resigning last Thursday from his role as head football coach at the University of Mississippi amid allegations of a “pattern of personal misconduct.”
“God is good, even in difficult times,” Freeze, an outspoken Christian and former high school coach of “Blind Side” subject Michael Oher, proclaimed in an interview with USA Today. “Wonderful wife and family, and that’s my priority.’”
The Southeaster Conference coach’s comments come after records revealed that a one-minute phone call was made from his university-affiliated cell phone back on Jan. 19, 2016, to a number affiliated with a female escort service, the outlet noted.
ANNOUNCEMENT | Hugh Freeze has resigned effective immediately. Matt Luke interim head coach. Press conference live at 7:30 PM CT on ESPNews.
— Ole Miss Football (@OleMissFB) July 20, 2017
It is unclear what the nature of that call was, though Yahoo! Sports quoted Ross Bjork, athletic director at the university, as saying that it was “attributed to a misdial,” but that officials reportedly later found a “pattern of misconduct.” It is unclear what that pattern involved, and there seem to be no plans to reveal that information.
“Coach Freeze was very transparent, open, honest and admitted the conduct,” Bjork said, though additional details about the nature of those admissions weren’t given. “He admitted that conduct to us. None of us are perfect. Nobody in this room is perfect. I think we need to respect how he resigned and respect his privacy.”
The singular call in question reportedly only unfolded one time in over 39,000 records, though Yahoo! Sports suggested that there must have been other information in the call logs that created concern. Officials said Freeze would have been fired had he not resigned, citing a “moral turpitude” clause in his contract, according to the outlet.
One thing I've learned….Adversity teaches us to have greater compassion for others in their hours of adversity. Thankful for this lesson.
— Hugh Freeze (@CoachHughFreeze) July 18, 2017
Freeze resigned from his position at Ole Miss last Thursday, but told USA Today on Wednesday that his family is sticking by him. He also said that he was planning to meet with his pastor on Wednesday evening after taking his daughters to play volleyball.
When he was told that some have “expressed disappointment” over what unfolded, he said, “I would expect that.”
The coach, who is typically active on Twitter, has been relatively quiet since July 18. It was on that day that he tweeted, “One thing I’ve learned. Adversity teaches us to have greater compassion for others in their hours of adversity. Thankful for this lesson.”
As Faithwire previously reported, Freeze was under fire earlier this year from atheist group The Freedom From Religion Foundation, who proclaimed in a press release that the coach “regularly promotes religion” on Twitter, suggesting that this was improper considering his role at the public university. Read more about that here.
Regardless of disappointment over what purportedly unfolded, people should certainly be praying for Freeze.