MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (WCMH) — Two days after using a homophobic slur on a Cincinnati radio program, West Virginia University announced that Bub Huggins will remain as men’s basketball coach but not without repercussions.
The university announced Wednesday that Huggins will not be terminated but it has reduced his salary by $1 million and his multi-year contract has been amended to a year-by-year agreement. Additionally, he will be suspended for the first three games of the 2023-24 season and any similar actions will result in him immediately being fired.
“I have no excuse for the language I used,” Huggins said in a statement. “I will abide with the actions outlined by the university and athletics leadership to learn from this incident. I am keenly aware of the pain that I have caused.”
The University has also required Huggins to meet with LGBTQ+ leaders from across West Virginia. “We will never truly know the damage that has been done by the words said in those 90 seconds,” said university president E. Gordon Gee in a statement. “Words matter and they can leave scars that can never be seen.”
Huggins called into the Bill Cunningham Show on Cincinnati’s 700 WLW Monday morning. During a clip posted on Twitter by Awful Announcing, a host asked Huggins about transfers from Xavier University, located in Cincinnati. Huggins served as head coach for the University of Cincinnati from 1989-2005.
Allegedly, Huggins can be heard saying “all those f**s, those Catholic f**s” after making a comment regarding Xavier fans throwing rubber phalluses onto the court following the 1999 Crosstown Shootout between Cincinnati and Xavier.
“Any school that can throw rubber penises on the floor and then say they didn’t do it, by God they can get away with anything,” Huggins said of the incident.
Cunningham then commented, “I think it was transgender night, wasn’t it?”
“It was the Crosstown Shootout, yeah, no,” Huggins responded. “What it was was all those f**s, those, those Catholic f**s, I think… They were envious they didn’t have one.”
Huggins issued an apology Monday evening shortly after the clip began to surface online.
The 69-year-old Huggins served as an assistant basketball coach for Ohio State University from 1978-1980 before being hired by Walsh University in North Canton as the team’s head coach, from 1980-83. After a year as an assistant at the University of Central Florida, Huggins returned to Ohio, serving as head coach at Akron for five years before landing the Cincinnati job. He was hired as West Virginia’s head coach in 2007.