Former Butler girls' basketball coach Stephanie Butler, who led the Bulldogs to the 2010 N.C. 4A championship, cannot coach at a N.C. public school until the 2011-12 season.
Friday, June 11, 2010
In late May, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools relieved Butler of her coaching duties after an investigation determined the coach had violated a local policy for recruiting. CMS banned Butler from ever coaching at another CMS school.
Que Tucker, deputy commissioner of the N.C. High School Athletic Association, said based on facts turned up by CMS, Butler was also in violation of an NCHSAA rule preventing coaches from having undue influence over student-athletes. Tucker said because of the violation, Butler could not coach at an NCHSAA school for 365 days.
Tucker said Butler was notified by letter and could re-apply for her coaching status at the end of the 12-month suspension. That means that Butler could not coach a public school again until the 2011-2012 season begins in November 2011.
Tucker said it was the second time the NCHSAA had administered the year-long suspension. Maurice Flowers, then coaching at West Charlotte, was given a 365-day suspension after a similar CMS investigation, during the 2007 season, into athletic eligibility led to penalties, suspensions and forfeits.
Flowers coached at Chester (S.C.) High in the 2008 and 2009 seasons. He resigned recently to pursue his master's degree.
Butler High will suffer no penalties because no member of the state championship team was involved in the events that led to coach Butler's removal, CMS officials said, and coach Butler will keep her job as a physical education teacher.
Coach Butler did not return calls seeking comment.
A group of supporters for coach Butler have started a petition to get her reinstated and several spoke at the school board meeting earlier this week. Many feel her penalty was too harsh.
Posted by Observer Sports at 1:32 PM