ITHACA, N.Y. (AP) — Cornell University has fired men's lacrosse coach Ben DeLuca, two months after the fall season's activities were canceled because of hazing. Athletic director Andy Noel says new leadership is required.
Assistant coach Matt Kerwick, formerly of Alfred University, among others, will serve as the interim coach.
The college announced the cancellation in September after an investigation determined upperclassmen had hazed freshman players who were made to drink beer to the point where some vomited.
Last year, a university fraternity was found guilty of hazing in the alcohol poisoning death of a Cornell student. Authorities said a 19-year-old sophomore from Brooklyn died after drinking too much alcohol during a hazing ritual.
In three seasons under DeLuca, a former Cornell player and assistant coach, the team went 37-11 overall and 16-2 in the Ivy League.
Meakem Smith Director of Athletics and Physical Education Andrew Noel issued this statement:
"This was a difficult decision, but our students are our first priority and there is no doubt now that new leadership is required.
"Matt is a proven leader and has held head coach positions at Hobart and Jacksonville University. I have great confidence in Matt's ability to lead the team in this time of transition. We are also confident in our ability to attract an exceptional head coach to lead the team forward in the tradition of Cornell Lacrosse."