More Turmoil In Berkeley As Cal Team Doctor Faces Allegations of Misconduct

The University of California Berkeley administration has come under fire over the last month following the allegations facing head women’s swim coach Teri McKeever, and now another high-ranking athletics employee is facing similar claims.

A UC Berkeley team doctor was placed on leave in December, the Southern California News Group (SCNG) recently learned, according to Global Circulate, as the school hired a law firm to conduct an investigation into allegations of misconduct against the physician.

Dr. Kent Scheff, an associate team physician for Cal’s athletic teams, was placed on “investigatory leave” on December 15, a school spokesman told SCNG.

McKeever, who is alleged to have verbally and emotionally abused swimmers throughout her 29-year career as the Bears’ head coach, was placed on administrative leave on May 25.

Cal told SCNG that Scheff remains on investigatory leave as of Friday.

The investigation into Scheff was prompted by complaints last year by female student-athletes at Cal who alleged misconduct by the doctor, according to a UC Berkeley athlete who has been interviewed by attorneys hired by the university.

Cal hired the same law firm it did to launch an investigation into McKeever, Munger, Tolles & Olson, to investigate Scheff.

“We are investigating a confidential matter on behalf of UC Berkeley regarding allegations of misconduct involving a UC Berkeley medical provider,” Mungur, Tolles & Olson attorney Jamie Luguri wrote in an email to a Cal athlete, according to SCNG. “We believe you may have relevant information.”

The documents obtained by SCNG did not detail the nature or extent of Scheff’s alleged misconduct.

He joined the Cal sports medicine staff in 2017.

Cal Berkeley Athletics Director Jim Knowlton said the investigation into McKeever could take “up to six months” at the beginning of June. It has now been over six months since Cal placed Scheff on investigatory leave.

McKeever is accused of verbal abuse, emotional abuse and bullying, including several swimmers who have trained under her claiming they were driven to suicidal thoughts by the way they were treated by the coach.

In the wake of McKeever’s allegations, numerous Cal swimmers have entered the NCAA transfer portal as they explore options elsewhere, including most recently 2022 NCAA Championship runner-up Izzy Ivey. One of the best collegiate swimmers in the country, Olympic gold medalist and two-time NCAA champion Maggie MacNeil, changed her decision to come to Berkeley for her fifth season of eligibility and instead went to LSU.

Jesse Moore, who was hired as an assistant coach at Cal in mid-April, is serving as the acting head coach while McKeever is on leave.

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7 months ago

How many athletic departments have had this much turmoil all at once? You have allegations against athletic directors (the allegations by Cindy Tran were awful), a head coach, now an athletic department Dr. Rip the bandaid off now Cal and start by firing the AD. It basically doesn’t matter if he is directly at fault, he has lost control of the organization and doesn’t seem to have been paying attention.

Last edited 7 months ago by Hereforthecrazyshow
7 months ago

Burn it down 🔥🔥🔥

7 months ago

And to move on from the issue below — how in the fresh hell does Knowlton still have a job? Maybe an alumni with more money than me can explain how.

7 months ago

The link in the story for Izzy Ivey is an admin WP link.
Also, maybe we should nuke the Cal athletic department from orbit. Just to be sure.

Last edited 7 months ago by BearlyBreathing
Reply to  BearlyBreathing
7 months ago

click on her name

Reply to  joanietheswimmer
7 months ago

I understand I can do that.
Stories shouldn’t have admin links in them.

Reply to  BearlyBreathing
7 months ago

Hey there, I’m not sure what you’re referring to. When I click on Ivey’s name or link at the bottom, her bio pulls up properly (even when I’m not logged in).

Reply to  Braden Keith
7 months ago

When I clicked on the link to the latest story, not her name, I got the W login page.

Reply to  Swimpop
7 months ago

Got it. Should be fixed now.

About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James swam five years at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, specializing in the 200 free, back and IM. He finished up his collegiate swimming career in 2018, graduating with a bachelor's degree in economics. In 2019 he completed his graduate degree in sports journalism. Prior to going to Laurentian, James swam …

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