LeGrand tweets to save embattled AD
Eric LeGrand, the former Rutgers football player who was paralyzed in a game in 2010, showed staunch support for Athletic Director Tim Pernetti, who's under fire for the handling of the Mike Rice coaching debacle.
When you're in a situation like I have been for the past 2 1/2 years, you truly see the character of people. Tim Pernetti has shown me and— Eric LeGrand (@EricLeGrand52) April 5, 2013
RU how great of a person he really is, and how much he really cares. He's a stand up guy that only wants to better the university. #B1G— Eric LeGrand (@EricLeGrand52) April 5, 2013
Former New York Giants lineman Shaun O'Hara, who went to Rutgers, also has come to Pernetti's defense.
More than 50 faculty members signed a letter calling for the dismissal of Pernetti and an explanation from President Robert Barchi for why he didn't fire Rice last year when he learned of a video showing Rice's behavior during practices.
State Senate President Stephen Sweeney also called for Pernetti to step down or be fired. He said Pernetti deserves credit for getting Rutgers into the Big Ten conference but mishandled this situation.
Meanwhile, the number of faculty members calling for Barchi to step down more than doubled Thursday to 28.
The letter calling for Barchi's resignation was sent to the university's governing boards on Wednesday. In it, the faculty members cite Barchi's ''inexcusable handling of coach Mike Rice's homophobic and misogynist abuse'' of players, his ''pattern of insensitivity and arrogance toward issues of diversity'' and the ''lack of transparency that he has exhibited in his relations'' with faculty, staff and students.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.