LARAMIE — Wyoming coach Dave Christensen has been suspended one week and fined $50,000 for his actions following an Oct. 13 loss to Air Force.
Athletic director Tom Burman said Monday that it’s important to send the right message to the team about taking responsibility for your actions.
Last week, the Mountain West Conference reprimanded Christensen for his postgame conduct, saying it violated the league’s sportsmanship rules. Christensen has apologized.
Christensen confronted Falcons coach Troy Calhoun on the field after Air Force’s 28-27 victory.
He accused the Falcons of faking an injury to their starting quarterback in the fourth quarter so they could set up the next play without taking a time out. Air Force took the lead on the next play when backup quarterback Kale Pearson scored on a bootleg.
“I want to apologize to Wyoming fans, the Mountain West Conference and the game of college football for my actions and for the comments that I made after our game against Air Force,” Christiansen said shortly after the incident. “I let my emotions, my passion for our football program and the frustrations of the first half of the season get the best of me, and my actions reflected negatively on our program.”
Assistant head coach Pete Kaligis will serve as interim head coach this week and will lead the Cowboys against No. 21 Boise State on Saturday.
Burman said in a written statement that the decision to suspend and fine Christensen was in the best interest of the university and the athletic department. “The reputation of our University and of our athletics programs is of the upmost importance,” he said.
He said another consideration was the well-being of the players. “I think it is important to send the right message to them in terms of taking responsibility for your actions,” Burman said. “This has been a difficult time for those young men. We hope that our fans will show their support for the team this coming weekend.”
University President Tom Buchanan said in a written statement that he supported Burman’s decision to fine Christensen over his “unacceptable and inappropriate behavior.”
“Such action does not reflect the values and the integrity of our athletics program or of the University of Wyoming,” Buchanan said.