Texas Wesleyan Fires Coach for Abject Stupidity

Mike Jeffcoat rejected a prospect, in writing, on account of marijuana being legal in his state, adding, "You can thank your liberal politicians."

ESPN (“Texas Wesleyan fires Mike Jeffcoat for rejecting recruit over Colorado pot laws“):

Texas Wesleyan has fired baseball coach Mike Jeffcoat for sending an email to a high school prospect saying the school doesn’t recruit players from Colorado because of failed drug tests.

Jeffcoat, a former Major League Baseball pitcher, was fired for “his remarks as well as the NAIA violations under his watch,” university president Fred Slabach told reporters Thursday.

“This university and its athletic program does not discriminate on the basis of the public policy of any state,” Slabach said. “We look at the individual student. We care about those students.”

Jeffcoat wrote an email to 18-year-old Gavin Bell, a senior at Cherokee Trail High School in Aurora, Colorado, thanking him for his interest in the program.

“Unfortunately, we are not recruiting players from the state of Colorado,” Jeffcoat’s email said. “In the past, players have had trouble passing our drug test. We have made a decision to not take a chance on student-athletes from your state. You can thank your liberal politicians. Best of luck wherever you decide to play.”

It’s a shame to end a 16-year coaching career over a stupid mistake, but this was certainly a doozy. The notion that every kid in the state of Colorado is going to test positive because it’s legal to smoke weed there is absurd. And, if that’s really your risk calculation, surely you can find a reason not to offer a kid a spot on the team for a reason that passes legal muster?

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James Joyner
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James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. Franklin says:

    That’s funny, because I don’t recruit from the 14 states with the most gun violence, because I don’t want to be shot. Oh, and 13 of those 14 are red states, isn’t that a weird coincidence?

  2. James Pearce says:

    It’s a shame to end a 16-year coaching career over a stupid mistake, but this was certainly a doozy.

    I have to think there was more to this relationship than this e-mail. I would bet Jeffcoat’s been acting out for a while, and this was the final straw.

    I have to laugh at this part though:

    ” You can thank your liberal politicians.”

    No, no we’re not going to thank the “liberal politicians.” They went kicking and screaming into cannabis legalization and only did it because the voters demanded it.

  3. SKI says:

    @James Pearce:

    as well as the NAIA violations under his watch


  4. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    No relation to Jim Jeffcoat, #77, bad-ass former defensive end for the Dallas Cowboys.

  5. Mike Schilling says:

    I remember Mike Jeffcoat with the Giants. 5+ ERA, 4 HRs in 22 innings.

  6. JohnMcC says:

    How much smarter was Rick Pitino? Well, I see he listed his house for sale for $24M. So maybe lots smarter?

  7. Just 'nutha ig'nint cracker says:

    @SKI: Beat me to it. Unfortunately, I’ll bet that they would have been willing to overlook the rules violations if this gaffe hadn’t attracted attention.

  8. DrDaveT says:

    It’s a shame to end a 16-year coaching career over a stupid mistake

    Fortunately, that’s clearly not what happened here.