PHILADELPHIA -- John Chaney was suspended for the rest of
the regular season by Temple on Friday for ordering rough play by
one of his players, who proceeded to foul out in 4 minutes against
Saint Joseph's and broke an opponent's arm.
The Hall of Fame coach had suspended himself for one game Wednesday and apologized for his actions. He will miss Temple's home game against Massachusetts on Saturday and road games against Rhode Island and La Salle, before returning for the Atlantic 10 tournament.
"I think my behavior is reprehensible and, as I've said 1,000 times, I take responsibility," Chaney told The Associated Press in a phone interview. "If it's the judgment of the school to suspend
me, I can accept the responsibility of my actions."
Chaney, angered by what he thought were illegal screens by Saint Joseph's, put in seldom-used 6-foot-8, 250 pound Nehemiah Ingram against the Hawks on Tuesday to "send a message." Ingram fouled forward John Bryant hard, sending him sprawling to the ground and breaking his arm. Jones will likely miss the rest of the season.
In a statement issued Saturday, Saint Joseph's said it was
encouraged by Temple's decision to suspend Chaney and by the
coach's show of remorse.
"Saint Joseph's University believes there is no place in
college basketball for this type of behavior, and there is nothing
in the way Saint Joseph's plays that is intended to cause harm to
its opponents," the school said. "Everyone involved must
recognize that a line was crossed before and after Tuesday's game,
and there must be continued monitoring of the situation to ensure
that what happened to John Bryant is not repeated."
Chaney said he called Bryant on Friday morning to apologize and also said he planned to talk to his parents. Chaney also offered to pay for any of Bryant's medical bills.
"I feel very contrite about John Bryant," Chaney said.
Temple president David Adamany announced the suspension in a statement Friday afternoon, and the conference won't request further punishment.
"The Atlantic 10 supports President Adamany's decision and will impose no further sanctions," commissioner Linda Bruno said in a statement Friday.
She said she had spoken with the presidents and athletic directors of both schools, including Saint Joseph's president Father Timothy Lannon and director of athletics Don DiJulia.
A source with knowledge of the meeting told ESPN.com's Andy Katz that Saint Joseph's was unhappy with the initial one-game suspension and recommended Chaney's apologies to the family and in the media.
Saint Joseph's also wanted the conference to punish Ingram, but officials decided against that.
"Because Nehemiah was instructed to commit the hard fouls, we found fault with coach Chaney, not Nehemiah," Ray Cella, assistant Atlantic 10 commissioner told Katz.
Saint Joseph's was traveling to Rhode Island and was not immediately available for comment.
A source close to the team told Katz that Martelli is "extremely angry" at Chaney and hurt by what has occurred.
The Hawks (15-9, 12-1 Atlantic 10) clinched a share of their
fifth straight conference title, but will likely have to win the
conference tournament to earn an NCAA Tournament berth.
Chaney's only other suspension came in 1994, when Temple suspended him for one game after he threatened then-Massachusetts coach John Calipari during a postgame news conference.
Chaney said he did not regret describing Ingram as a "goon" after the game because he said the term had been used to describe his team the last time they play Saint Joseph's.
"It was just a word that was reverberating throughout my head," Chaney said.
Because some students spit in the direction of Saint Joe's players and cheerleaders, Adamany said the first few rows of the student section at the Liacouras Center would be empty for Saturday's game as a reminder they should uphold the standards of good sportsmanship.
"I incited them by my behavior, I guess," Chaney said.
Philadelphia 76ers guard Aaron McKie, who played for Chaney from 1991-94, stood by his former coach.
"I'm sure Coach in his private time, his down time, probably regrets what he said because he's always trying to do things the right way," McKie said. "I hope people don't misunderstand that.
It's just an unfortunate incident."
The Hall of Famer has a 721-294 record in 33 seasons. He said he hasn't decided how this black mark will affect his decision about whether to return for another season.
"I've had a reputation for many years, I've done many things wrong and made a lot of mistakes," Chaney said. "My name is a lightning rod. Right now, I'll just take inventory of myself."