In just his first year as coach of the USC women’s basketball team, coach Michael Cooper has brought a new energy to the Women of Troy.
However, that energy went a bit too far after last Sunday’s 70-63 victory over rival UCLA.
During the postgame press conference, Cooper’s first words were: “My opening statement is (expletive) UCLA”
Cooper received a great deal of media attention for the surprising statement and offered an apology Tuesday via a letter to Bruins coach Nikki Caldwell.
“I want to offer my sincerest apology to you, your players and your university for the inappropriate comment I made after our game on Sunday,” Cooper stated in his letter. “There is no excuse for it, and I realize it is outside the bounds of good sportsmanship.”
Cooper, who was a popular figure in Los Angeles during his days as a Los Angeles Laker, has never been a controversial figure, and even won the J. Walter Kennedy Citizenship Award in 1986, which awards “outstanding service and dedication to the community.”
Cooper realized his mistake Tuesday, and knew the impact of his comments.
“As a coach, I know I am a role model to student-athletes and my comment was certainly not a proper example for them. I will work hard to correct that,” Cooper said.
Despite Cooper’s apology, Pac-10 officials stated Tuesday that the conference was looking into the comments and situation, and Cooper may be reprimanded by the Pac-10.