Mizzou head coach Gary Pinkel is officially resigning at the end of the season due to health reasons. According to a media release from the school, Pinkel was diagnosed with lymphoma in May of 2015, a type of non-Hodgkins lymphoma cancer of the blood. He started receiving treatments immediately, but said he made the decision October 27 to resign at the end of the year.
From Missouri Football:
“I still feel good physically, but I decided that I want to focus on enjoying my remaining years with my family and friends, and also have proper time to battle the disease and give full attention to that. I want to make very clear that I’m not doing poorly, and that this is a manageable disease, but it’s one that will never go away,” Pinkel said.
The announcement of Pinkel’s resignation comes at a tough time for the university.
It’s just days after the football team joined in on a campus-wide protest to oust UM Systems president Tim Wolfe. A grad student, Jonathan Butler, started a hunger strike until Wolfe resigned. The protesters, known as #ConcernedStudent1950, said Wolfe wasn’t doing enough about racism on campus.
The football team’s boycott brought the story from local news to national and even international headlines.
Shortly after, the Missouri coaches voiced their support for the team’s decision.
— Coach Gary Pinkel (@GaryPinkel) November 8, 2015
Wolfe stepped down as UM Systems president on Monday.
The protests have caused heightened racial tension on campus. Anonymous threats posted on social media caused a campus-wide freakout Tuesday night, although there were no reports of major violence overnight.
Mizzou chancellor R. Bowen Loftin also announced he’ll be transitioning from his role in wake of the protests.
Pinkel’s been an integral part of bringing Missouri respect since the school joined the SEC in 2012. He led the Tigers to a 12-2 record in 2013 and 11-3 in 2014, winning the SEC East both years.
Pinkel is 190-108 in his career as a head coach at Toledo and Missouri.
Pinkel’s departure will almost certainly have a huge impact on incoming recruits who toughed it out despite all the news this week.
Pinkel’s resignation is effective Dec. 31. Get well soon..
[via Missouri Football]
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