Former coach accused of misconduct with athlete

Updated: April 25, 2007, 12:48 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

BOSTON -- Boston College women's hockey coach Tom Mutch, who took the Eagles to the NCAA Frozen Four just one month ago, abruptly resigned Tuesday after a university investigation into allegations of inappropriate conduct between him and a student-athlete.

Tom Mutch
Mutch

The school gave no details of the probe. The Boston Herald, citing an anonymous source, reported the nature of the conduct involved graphic text messages allegedly sent to Mutch by 19-year-old Kelli Stack, who just completed her freshman season under Mutch.

"An allegation of inappropriate conduct has been raised involving" the coach, BC athletics director Gene DeFilippo said in a statement. "The university takes any such matters very seriously. As a result, the athletics department began an investigation of the alleged incident as soon as it was brought to our attention. Coach Mutch subsequently submitted his resignation, and his resignation was accepted."

BC spokesman Chris Cameron said he had no further comment. When reached on his cell phone Tuesday by the Herald, Mutch hung up and did not return follow-up messages.

Stack did not respond to the Herald's requests for comment.

Earlier Tuesday, the school had issued a statement that made no reference to any allegations, saying Mutch resigned "to pursue other career interests."

That statement also praised Mutch, who led the Eagles to their first appearance in the women's Frozen Four this year and was Hockey East coach of the year.

"Tom Mutch brought our women's ice hockey program to a new level and built a strong foundation for the future," DeFilippo said in the first statement. "We wish him the best in his future endeavors."

Boston College improved in each of Mutch's four seasons as coach. This season, the team set program records in multiple categories, including wins, shutouts and goals scored.

Mutch, who is married and whose wife gave birth to a girl in September, played hockey at Northeastern from 1986-88. He became assistant coach of the U.S. women's national team in 1996 and held that position on the team that won the gold medal at the 1998 Olympics in Nagano, Japan. In 2002, he was an assistant coach on the Northeastern men's team.

Stack, a forward from Ohio, led the Eagles in assists (37) and points (54) during a 24-10-2 season that peaked in the NCAA tournament semifinals, where BC lost to Minnesota Duluth 4-3 in double overtime.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.