Softball season ticket holders ask Savoie for answers - KATC.com | Continuous News Coverage | Acadiana-Lafayette

Softball season ticket holders ask Savoie for answers

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A group of UL Softball season ticket holders provided KATC with a letter they sent to UL President Joe Savoie last week.

The letter raises concerns about possible Title IX violations, and asks the president to explain why the team doesn't have the same level of support - like an athletic trainer, routine grounds maintenance, etc. - that other teams do.

The letter comes as the team's coach, Mike Lotief, is on leave. His attorney says it is because he raised Title IX concerns about the way his team is treated. Yesterday, KATC obtained a letter written by almost all of the members of the team, accusing the university of trying to destroy the program. Last night, we interviewed several players who talked about how they feel about the situation.

Also last night, KATC interviewed a local attorney who represents members of the team, and also represents former assistant coach Sara Corbello, who was fired Monday. According to the attorney, Clayton Burgess, there was no cause for her termination and she had not been disciplined or under investigation prior to it. To read that story, click here

The season ticket holder's letter was sent on October 24, and there has been no response, the group tells KATC. 

Here's the letter: 

We are a group of Ragin Cajun supporters that would like to voice our concerns over the handling of the issues with UL’s Softball program and Coach Michael Lotief.  We fully support the softball program and admire the values that Coach Lotief brings to the program.  To leave our coach on administrative leave and the matter unresolved for nearly three weeks is a serious problem that can have many negative consequences. 

Along with this being a blackeye to our recruiting efforts, we think it is a serious problem for our student athletes, ask any softball player why they came to our university and one of the first things they will list is Coach Lotief!  Has the athletic administration thought about what is going through the minds of our athletes while our program is in this state of uncertainty?  Do our players feel that they have been abandoned or forgotten?  Is the administration alienating our players?  Will our softball players leave?

We don’t want to judge, but if there are Title IX violations, how is it going to look if our school is penalizing our coach for voicing his objections to the problems and stating his needs?   Why does softball in particular, not have an athletic trainer?  Why are our facilities not maintained as well as those of other major sports (i.e. grass, cleaning of bleachers, painting, field maintenance)?  Why are some of our support staff not paid for their work?

It is an understatement to say that Coach Lotief is very passionate about the softball program.  He has a nationally recognized program and to have the issues that are before him, the team and the staff, makes our university look very bad, definitely not like a Division I contender. He is respected and honored by the coaching community across the country and by his program’s supporters, US.   What other mid-major softball program is most always ranked nationally on a meager budget like ours?  Our family of supporters embrace our players, their families, and our coaches and strive to give all we can to help them. 

We now need support from you and our university. We the fans and supporters are hoping for a swift and amicable resolution to the issues at hand and for Coach Michael Lotief to be reinstated so that our Softball Program can continue to flourish.

Sincerely submitted by:

Clark & Spring White
Carl & Belinda Vincent
Jan Jumonvillle
Dave & Joni Hamilton
David & Susie Crouch
Brenda King
Charles H. Fox Jr. & Glenda Sue LeBlanc
Troy Albarado
Madeline & Wayne LeBlanc
Ron & Paula Newman
Rene Prejean & Velma Cosper
Steve & Pat Venetis
Keith LeBlanc
Rene Bourriague
Fritz Mueller
Phil & Connie Gremillion
Ted & Cindy Nevels
Gary & Melissa Landry
Denise Brignac
Bobby Neveaux
Johnny & Sandra Poirot
Clyde & Shirley Judice
Jamie & Jessica Tarpley
Jack Winn
Jim O’Neal
Cynthia & Gerald Trahan
Susan Daigle
Jacqueline Babineaux
Heather Hamilton
Linda Hamilton
Richard Pierce
Jim & Carrolyn Hamilton
Joe & Candace Olivier
Michele Derise
Constance & Richard Becker
Betty & Howard Fournet
Scott & Elizabeth Hamilton
Amanda Credeur
Ricky Aube
Ron Dartez
Cara Olivier
Franklin & Kaylen Olivier

Morris Olivier, Sr.
Leigha Marcantel
Kaden Marcantel

Angel Olivier
Nathan Olivier

Bobby & Cookie Benson
Lynn Bergeron
Riv & Becky Rivet
Steve & Linda Gremillion
Earl Benson
Jerry & Ginger Domingue
Alan & Vicki Jones

Dan & Linda Bonin

Greg Benoit

Terry & Elizabeth Fontenot

Vance Lanier

Warren & Sylvia Lowe

John & Sherry Perre

Patrick & Darren Tucker

Luke Elliott

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