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Rodriguez Calls Allegations 'Dishearting'

Sports Betting News - August 31st, 2009 - Written by John

rich rodriguuezFootball programs are only allowed to practice their players for 20 hours per week (not including unsupervised activities) and the second-year coach went on to say that he has a close personal relationship and did not break the rules.

"I love working with our staff like i love my own family," said Rodriguez. "The thing that bothers me the most about the things that have been written or said is that the perception that is out there that we do not care as much about the student-athletes welfare. That is disheartening. To say that is misleading, inaccurate and goes against everything that I believe in coaching."

Rodriguez has been under fire ever since he abruptly left West Virginia to take the Michigan job. His former University fought him for a $4 million buyout and accused Rodriguez of shredding documents before bolting for Michigan.

The new allegations come at the heels of a settlement between the two parties and couldn't have come at a worst time for his new program. The Wolverines are trying to rebuild from it's worst campaign in four decade and will have to do it with an inexperienced quarterbacking corps and questions all over the field. Michigan suffered it's first losing season since 1967, winning only three games and missing the postseason for the first time in 34 years.

This isn't the first time a school has been investigated for overworking their players. In 1999, Wichita State investigated the claims that it's basketball program exceeded the allotted practice time. The school reprimanded their head coach and declined to sign him to an extension.

Last March, University of Central Florida redshirt freshman Ereck Plancher collapsed and died inside the team's practice facility in a disputed chain of events. The family of Plancher claims the coaching staff acted inappropriately, pushing Plancher when he was struggling to keep up during sprints. Reports claim that teammates tried to help Plancher to his feet when he fell down, only to have the coaching staff order them to do it on his own. He collapsed and died moments later.

Like UCF, Michigan has begun to look into the claims and Big Ten officials have also started to poke around as well.

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