Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Eastern Washington and distance coach Chris Shane part ways...

CHENEY—According to a post on the popular distance running web site, Eastern Washington University and distance coach Chris Shane (above, with Sarah Reiter/photo by Paul Merca) have parted ways.

According to the post, the school published a 57-page report alleging misconduct on Shane’s part.

In the same thread (the link to the thread is here), men’s cross country team captain Isaac Kitzan wrote, “A 57 page Human Resources report was published. In early November, a complaint was filed by an athlete I will not name. The complaint included two pages of allegations made towards Chris. Over the next few weeks each athlete on the men's team was asked to come into HR and be interviewed regarding each allegation. Every response made by every athlete is included in the report. That explains the length. I have not personally read the report, but after speaking with several of my teammates, and knowing how I answered, a large chunk of those pages is dedicated to refuting claims that were either extremely exaggerated or completely false.”

Shane went on the message board to acknowledge the fact that he is no longer the distance coach at Eastern Washington.

“This report, is unfortunately true. I was notified this morning that Eastern Washington University had chosen to “part ways”. I adamantly disagree and am dumbfounded by this decision. I was given a severance package for my contract being terminated early with technically, no official cause. My heart goes out (to) my wonderful athletes at Eastern who, in talking with them today, overwhelmingly support me. This unnessarily (sp) affects their student athlete experience,” Shane posted in the thread.

He concluded, “I would like to strongly reiterate, on this public forum, that EWU and myself parted ways. And there was absolutely zero mention of misconduct. I’ll stand by that statement with every fiber of my being. I’m fine with this thread being informative, but to use it to throw shade on my name, my family’s name, or my ability to coach student athletes is shameful.”

During his time at Eastern Washington, Shane was instrumental in helping Sarah Reiter qualify for the NCAA cross country championship meet twice.  Shane, the son of BYU coaching legend Patrick Shane, who last week was inducted into the USTFCCCA coaches’ hall of fame, formerly was an assistant coach at the University of San Francisco before the Eagles hired him in July 2015.

This web site has reached out to the sports information staff at Eastern Washington University for an official comment or statement, but has not heard.  The school has removed Shane’s photo and bio from its web site.  This web site has also reached out to Shane for a comment. This story will be updated as more information comes in.

UPDATE:  In an email to publisher Paul Merca, EWU sports information director Dave Cook wrote, " external comments will be made by EWU (personnel matters are not released typically). We will open the position sometime in the near future."

When contacted via social media, Kitzan declined comment on the matter.

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