Middlebury Coach Resigns

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Colbybr
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Middlebury Coach Resigns

Post by Colbybr » Tue Apr 26, 2011 2:20 pm

From the NESCAC forum, but fairly significant to D3 overall, with Middlebury a perennial top program:

http://talk.collegeconfidential.com/mid ... signs.html
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Re: Middlebury Coach Resigns

Post by DonCheadle » Tue Apr 26, 2011 2:50 pm

How much did the "hazing" incidents play into this? I hope not much, but I bet it was significant.
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Re: Middlebury Coach Resigns

Post by silentp » Tue Apr 26, 2011 3:22 pm

Colbybr wrote:From the NESCAC forum, but fairly significant to D3 overall, with Middlebury a perennial top program
To be sure, it's a good program but "perennial top" is way overstating it. They've been good, with a stud or 2, but I believe have the potential to be a lot better with the right fit of a coach. I'd imagine the Wheaton MA coach will get the job.
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Re: Middlebury Coach Resigns

Post by OlderEveryday » Tue Apr 26, 2011 4:01 pm

"While the most recent hazing incident took its toll on me professionally and personally, it is not the reason for my resignation. I have been thinking about moving on, and decided that now was a good time for me to make a change."

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Mac of the MIAC
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Re: Middlebury Coach Resigns

Post by Mac of the MIAC » Tue Apr 26, 2011 5:06 pm

OlderEveryday wrote:"While the most recent hazing incident took its toll on me professionally and personally, it is not the reason for my resignation. I have been thinking about moving on, and decided that now was a good time for me to make a change."
Do everyone a favor and disappear for 20 years. What you allowed to happen, repeatedly, is cowardly.

http://abcnews.go.com/US/hazing-prompts ... d=13169051
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Re: Middlebury Coach Resigns

Post by Colbybr » Tue Apr 26, 2011 6:06 pm

silentp wrote:
Colbybr wrote:From the NESCAC forum, but fairly significant to D3 overall, with Middlebury a perennial top program
To be sure, it's a good program but "perennial top" is way overstating it. They've been good, with a stud or 2, but I believe have the potential to be a lot better with the right fit of a coach. I'd imagine the Wheaton MA coach will get the job.
Ok we have a different term for "perennial top", that's fine. I agree that they have underachieved for quite some time. That school/program has a TON going for it. That facility is AWESOME, the school is a highly desirable place, and the administration cares about their athletic teams.
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Re: Middlebury Coach Resigns

Post by swimdoctor » Tue Apr 26, 2011 8:08 pm

"Cowardly?" I don't think that is an accurate characterization of the event or the Coach. Peter is a class act, always very positive and supportive. The link that is posted has a inflammatory photo that is totally misleading, as no one at the Midd "hazing" was touched or physically harmed in any way. They didn't even have any drugs or alcohol, for crying out loud.
I'm more with the earlier post "Hazing? Or the Best Party of the Year". The administration blew this totally out of proportion, and the punishment excessive.It certainly won't encourage athletes to report hazing incidents.
Peter had no responsibility for the fairly innocuous stunt cooked up by some irresponsible girls. It shouldn't be reflected on him in any way. He will be missed by many.I can only hope his "replacement" is as fine an individual and as inspiring a coach. :(

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Re: Middlebury Coach Resigns

Post by h2ocoach13 » Tue Apr 26, 2011 8:19 pm

Mac of the MIAC wrote:Do everyone a favor and disappear for 20 years. What you allowed to happen, repeatedly, is cowardly.
Wow, what a terrible post! Mac, maybe you should join the bleeding hearts in Vermont. Here in America, we believe in personal accountability, including and especially in young adults. Yes, Coach Solomon is in a position of teaching young people to be strong, confident, able contributors to society, but he cannot and should not be held responsible for the poor choices of a few individuals that happen to be on his Team, but not in his charge at the time.

Best of luck to Peter as he moves on to other ventures.

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Re: Middlebury Coach Resigns

Post by imJumbo » Tue Apr 26, 2011 8:32 pm

h2ocoach13 wrote:
Mac of the MIAC wrote:Do everyone a favor and disappear for 20 years. What you allowed to happen, repeatedly, is cowardly.
Wow, what a terrible post! Mac, maybe you should join the bleeding hearts in Vermont. Here in America, we believe in personal accountability, including and especially in young adults. Yes, Coach Solomon is in a position of teaching young people to be strong, confident, able contributors to society, but he cannot and should not be held responsible for the poor choices of a few individuals that happen to be on his Team, but not in his charge at the time.

Best of luck to Peter as he moves on to other ventures.
Agree with coach. Mac, you're stock just went down a few points in my book. Sorry.

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Re: Middlebury Coach Resigns

Post by silentp » Tue Apr 26, 2011 9:01 pm

Colbybr wrote:
silentp wrote:
Colbybr wrote:From the NESCAC forum, but fairly significant to D3 overall, with Middlebury a perennial top program
To be sure, it's a good program but "perennial top" is way overstating it. They've been good, with a stud or 2, but I believe have the potential to be a lot better with the right fit of a coach. I'd imagine the Wheaton MA coach will get the job.
Ok we have a different term for "perennial top", that's fine. I agree that they have underachieved for quite some time. That school/program has a TON going for it. That facility is AWESOME, the school is a highly desirable place, and the administration cares about their athletic teams.
Completely agree with the latter portion of the post. Whoever takes that position could really have an opportunity on their hands.
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Dee: You went to Vietnam in 1993 to open up a sweatshop!
Frank: ...and a lot of good men died in that sweatshop!

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Re: Middlebury Coach Resigns

Post by Colbybr » Tue Apr 26, 2011 9:06 pm

I think Pete was pretty polarizing during his time. I have either met people who say he is one of the best coaches ever or have a serious axe to grind with him. Not finding a lot of people in between
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Re: Middlebury Coach Resigns

Post by swimcoach05 » Tue Apr 26, 2011 10:19 pm

I've found that people with stronger emotions are usually more likely to speak their mind on an issue. You're going to find more people who either love or hate a coach telling you their opinion of him/her. Those who think Pete Solomon is a "pretty good coach" aren't going to feel the same necessity to tell everyone their coach is simply adequate.

I swam in the NESCAC and also coached one year at a NESCAC institution (neither were Middlebury). From everything I've ever seen and heard, Pete Solomon is a classy guy and a very good coach.

I think it's also necessary to point out that coaches are often the easy scapegoat for mistakes made by their student-athletes. I'll point out two things. First, 18-22 year olds make a lot of poor decisions. Second, a coach can't watch their student-athletes all hours of the day, nor would any college kid want to be watched day and night. If a bunch of girls do something stupid on a Saturday night, how is that the coaches fault?

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Re: Middlebury Coach Resigns

Post by ScotsFan » Wed Apr 27, 2011 11:45 am

From that same website (http://abcnews.go.com/US/hazing-prompts ... d=13169051) comes this quote:

"Middlebury College subsequently released a statement by Dean Shirley Collado that reads in part: 'The violations took place during activities involving both teams on Feb. 2…As of Feb. 7, the college's Department of Public Safety had interviewed more than 30 students. On Feb. 8, college administrators determined that the women's swim team, with the exception of the first-year students, will not compete for the remainder of the season. Both the men's and women's teams will be on probation next year. Middlebury College has a zero tolerance policy for hazing and harassment, and takes all possible conduct violations very seriously.'"

One thing this highlights is the problem with "zero tolerance" policies. Once the hazing was determined to have occurred, that was it - punishment was mandatory. And that's too bad. If I had to guess, I'd say that the real issue was "Was this hazing, or not?" And once it couldn't be established that it was NOT hazing, the harsh punishment was unavoidable. I really think schools need to re-think zero-tolerance - a policy which generally doesn't work in our broader society. There's no nuance. Was it mild or severe hazing? Was everyone who was punished the same way involved to the same extent? If an upperclassmen wasn't even there, was she nonetheless punished?

This year's women's NESCAC meet suffered by the absence of the Middlebury upperclass women. Swimming with just their first-years, Midd was still able to finish ahead of some teams, as I recall (that's a measure of Coach Solomon's success alone).

Coach Solomon's swimmers have always tapered extremely well, and to me the best measure of a swim coach as a technician is the quality of his or her taper. He also had many wonderfully talented and colorful swimmers come through the program, including last year's NCAA Swimmer of the Meet. By all appearances he was well liked by his athletes, and in a few interactions with him I found him to be exceedingly polite and humble. I wish him well.

I hope Mac of the MIAC isn't a coach. I can't imagine the burden of being a college swimming coach: knowing you have, on the one hand, the death penalty of zero tolerance and, on the other hand, young adults over whom you have a very limited ability to control. They're college kids, after all, and it's a long, cold winter up there in northern Vermont. You can mandate punishment, but you can't mandate maturity.
Last edited by ScotsFan on Wed Apr 27, 2011 1:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Middlebury Coach Resigns

Post by DonCheadle » Wed Apr 27, 2011 12:46 pm

ScotsFan wrote: I can't imagine the burden of being a college swimming coach: knowing you have, on the one hand, the death penalty of zero tolerance and, on the other hand, young adults over whom you have a very limited ability to control.
Do you think that the swimmers who violated the hazing policy did so knowing that it could result in the "death peantly" for the team, or was there a failure to communicate the severity of the consequence of hazing.

Perhaps I am oversimplifying but:

Coach: "TEAM, if you HAZE the season is canceled. If you are not sure if what you have planned would be classified as HAZING you better check with me first."

If the coach had that talk then it is the swimmers who screwed up. If the coach did not have that talk - using that very concise langauge - then he screwed up.
Last edited by DonCheadle on Wed Apr 27, 2011 3:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Middlebury Coach Resigns

Post by chrismyhre » Wed Apr 27, 2011 1:17 pm

I too have found Pete to be an outstanding person, an obvious coach of high caliber, and perhaps most important, I have always sensed a genuine passion for his swimmers, his team, and D-III swimming in general. I have read some very insightful thoughts regarding the hazing issues that Middlebury went through. It is very difficult to get it perfect. What were the words used by any coach at the beginning of the season? Did they cover themselves, their job security in an absolute way? I believe one tries to get it right but in the end, something may have been left out. We all teeter on that brink perhaps, and rather than join the fray of tossing an exceptional man under the proverbial bus, I am very sad to see him go. We have lost a part of our coaching body and I am feeling a little incomplete right now.

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