The University of Arizona released a statement on Sunday evening that it had rescinded an offer of employment to John Appleman as the school’s next head diving coach. The succinct statement reveals that, in spite of a June announcement of his hiring, Appleman was not yet formally hired.
The statement comes after Appleman was suspended by USA Diving last week for undisclosed reasons. USA Diving responded with a statement when SwimSwam reached out on Friday saying that athlete safety is important to them, but declined to share further details about Appleman’s suspension.
Appleman, formerly the head coach of the Ohio State Diving Club, was announced as the new head diving coach at Arizona in early June. He was suspended by USA Diving on July 12th.
He was previously the head coach and owner of the Dominion Diving Club in Virginia; when he left, 4-time NCAA Division II Champion Stephanie Sutton took over the club. She was also suspended on July 12th.
A former diver at The Ohio State University Diving Club filed a lawsuit on July 11th, the day before Appleman’s suspension, against USA Diving, The Ohio State University Diving Club, and Will Bohonyi – a coach whom, in 2015, was declared permanently ineligible by USA Diving for having a sexual relationship with an underage diver. (See the full complaint here.) The suit only mentions Appleman once: saying that he was informed of Bohonyi’s abuse by one of the victim’s teammates. The suit alleges that “neither USA Diving nor Ohio State took any immediate action against Bohonyi.” Sutton is not mentioned once in the suit, and the suit doesn’t outline any specific accusation against Appleman, by name, that would be a violation of USA Diving’s Code of Conduct.
Sutton’s name does not appear in the complaint at all.
Arizona’s Full Statement is Below:
“The University of Arizona has rescinded an offer of employment to John Appleman, head coach of The Ohio State University diving club.
Appleman was offered a position in April, but his employment was not finalized.”