Chatman didn't resign from LSU willingly
Pokey Chatman did not leave willingly.
That's what the former LSU women's basketball coach told reporters recently, in her first public comments since leaving the school under a cloud of allegations in March.
"The best word would be bombarded," Chatman said, according to Baton Rouge's The Advocate. "I'm at the hairdresser and I get a call [from associate head coach Bob Starkey saying], 'They don't want you to take the practice floor [March 6] at 12 o'clock.' I have never spoken to a LSU person in position of authority before, during or after. Only my subordinate [Starkey]. That's it. I couldn't tell you what the allegations were specifically."
Carla Berry, Chatman's former teammate and assistant at LSU, came forward alleging that the coach had sexual relationships with former players. The 37-year-old Chatman resigned with two years remaining on her contract and didn't coach the team in the NCAA tournament.
Conducting a basketball camp at her alma mater, Hahnville High in Boutte, La., Chatman said she was hurt by the way the school handled the situation.
"I had a 20-year career at LSU, and that didn't warrant a 20-minute conversation," she said, according to the New Orleans Times-Picayune. "Would I do things different? That's difficult to say, because I didn't get to do anything. And I'll just leave it at that. I don't want to wrestle in the mud with the pigs. The bottom line is, I worked 20 years for an institution, and I couldn't get a 20-minute conversation about what was going on. That told me right then and there that I was not wanted there."
Chatman said she resigned so that the team would not suffer under a protracted controversy. She has since been consulting with a shoe company and weighing her options.
"Will I coach again? I'm coaching today," she said from the camp, according to the Times-Picayune. "Will I ever coach another college team? You never rule anything out, but that's not what I'm looking for today."