GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) — A former University of Wisconsin-Green Bay basketball player is detailing his accusations of abuse that sparked an investigation into coach Brian Wardle.
In an interview published Monday in the Green Bay Press-Gazette former freshman center Ryan Bross says Wardle abused him verbally, made comments about his sex life, interfered with his academic course choices and drove him after he became ill during a practice to the point he lost control of his bowels.
Wardle, 33, said in a statement that the version of events being reported is false but that he cannot talk about the specific allegations due to the investigation. He said he, his coaches and players are all cooperating with an independent investigator looking into the matter.
“I fully expect the eyewitnesses to these allegations you are reporting will contradict the version you are reporting,” Wardle said.
Bross tells the newspaper that Wardle called him derogatory and sometimes homophobic names. He says Wardle insisted he continue running during a conditioning practice even after he became ill and later mocked him when he defecated in his shorts. Bross said Wardle made comments about a woman he liked, saying he would be a better basketball player if he had sex. He also said Bross intervened with his academic adviser to prevent him from taking classes toward a human biology major.
The university announced it was investigating Wardle after receiving a complaint from Bross’ parents. The parents of a second player, senior forward Brennan Cougill, also filed a complaint. Cougill’s mother, Gina Cougill, accused Wardle of minimizing her son’s clinical depression as a “distraction” to the team.
Others, including Orrin Brown, father of junior center Alec Brown, have publicly supported Wardle.
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