Texas Tech has suspended men's basketball coach Mark Adams for making an "inappropriate, unacceptable, and racially insensitive" comment last week during a coaching session. Texas Tech athletic director Kirby Hocutt announced the suspension Sunday, two days after he was made aware of the incident.
"Adams was encouraging the student-athlete to be more receptive to coaching and referenced Bible verses about workers, teachers, parents, and slaves serving their masters," a statement from Texas Tech said. "Adams immediately addressed this with the team and apologized."
Texas Tech said Hocutt addressed the matter with Adams, who was issued a written reprimand. Hocutt subsequently made the decision to suspend Adams effective immediately to conduct "a more thorough inquiry of Adams' interactions with his players and staff," the school said.
Adams told Stadium's Jeff Goodman that he did not believe his comments were racist and defended the interaction by saying that he was quoting a verse from the bible. The player affected complained about the interaction, but Adams did not apologize. Goodman also reported a separate incident earlier in the season in which Adams allegedly spit on a player. Adams denied that he spit on a player to Goodman, but admitted he slobbered on the player during the game after having a bad cough and going to the doctor.
Adams just finished his second regular season after taking over the Texas Tech program when Chris Beard left for Texas in 2021. Texas Tech went 27-10 in Adams' first season and advanced to the Sweet 16, but is 16-15 on the year this season. The Red Raiders fell in their regular-season finale Saturday, 71-68 to Oklahoma State, dropping them to 5-13 in Big 12 play -- tied with OU for the worst conference record this season.
The head coaching job for Adams, a Texas Tech graduate, is his first at the power conference level after serving as an assistant on Chris Beard's staff at Tech and Little Rock. Adams also has decades of experience as a head coach at the junior college level, which he amassed before breaking through at Little Rock with Beard in 2015.