Australian swim coach Denis Cotterell escaped punishment in Swimming Australia’s investigation into one of his former assistants, but the Gold Coast Bulletin reports that local parents aren’t happy with that outcome.
The investigation was for Brian King, who coached alongside Cotterell at the Miami Swimming Club. King was accused of a whole host of negative activities, including falsifying his resume to get the job at Miami and verbally abusing athletes while coaching there.
Last month, Swimming Australia suspended King from coaching for 6 months, and from coaching children for 3 years.
Now, though, parents have turned their attention to Cotterell, who they say knew about King’s verbal abuse but didn’t act on it while the two men coached together at Miami.
The Gold Coast Bulletin has the story here, reporting that parents have gotten the Australian Sports Commission involved in looking into Cotterell’s conduct during the King years.
SwimSwam’s lengthy report on King back in May touched on this issue, with the past two presidents of the Miami Swimming Club alleging that Cotterell covered for King even as complaints of abuse poured in. (You can read that full story here – the portion about Cotterell is in the third-to-last heading).
Cotterell publicly defended King when the accusations first began to heat up, telling the Daily Telegraph that the swimmers under King needed to toughen up and that the complaints against King were “trumped up.”
Swimming Australia’s CEO said in the Bulletin piece that it had addressed everything raised by its investigation, standing by its decision to suspend King but not punish Cotterell.
Swimming Australia CEO Mark Anderson said the organisation had “addressed all matters raised and had reinforced the key lessons and issues raised directly with all relevant individuals involved in the case.
“In this communication we also reinforced to all individuals the importance of the Member and Child Welfare Policies and expected behaviour.
The other major accusation floating around is that King was serving as an intermediary between Cotterell and Chinese World Record-holder Sun Yang, whom Cotterell coached. Swimming Australia forced Cotterell to officially cut ties with Sun after a failed doping test, but Sun stayed in Australia, training instead with King, leading to allegations that Cotterell was still training the Chinese distance man by proxy.