Mail track

ORU denies former athletics coach Joe Dial’s claims of efforts to get him out | ORU Sports Supplementary

Bryce McKinnis World of Tulsa

Oral Roberts University has disputed claims former track and field coach Joe Dial made last week on his personal Facebook account.

The 28-plus-year-old former Golden Eagles coach posted a message on June 5 to ‘speak my peace’, claiming sporting director Tim Johnson and ORU ‘released a false narrative’ after a series of rulings that left Dial, 59, unhappy.

Dial said Johnson asked him to reduce the number of his scholarships to 15.5 men and women in May 2021.

“After going through the list, Tim Johnson says, ‘That’s not enough, more needs to be cut,'” Dial wrote.

Dial said he, Johnson – then assistant DA – and then-athletic director Mike Carter compromised to keep sprinters and jumpers on the purse and reduce distance runners.

“Weeks after that,” Dial said, “I went into Tim Johnson’s office…Tim said, ‘I thought about it, and I want to do all the distance runners now. “”

People also read…

Dial went on to say that he was asked to hire a distance coach and was led to believe that the sprinter scholarships he had to cut would be reinstated. When Dial found Kyle Gibson — who took over as head coach for the cross-country team and as assistant coach for track and field in September 2021 — he said Johnson asked him to dedicate an additional $8,000 from ORU’s athletics fundraising account to pay Gibson.

“So every week that went by we were losing kids because I’m not able to afford them…waiting and waiting for the new AD to have the conversation with the (ORU President Dr. William M. Wilson) “Dial wrote. “At the end of January (2022), one of the financial administrators starts telling Shawna (Dial’s wife and assistant) that we are going to have to reduce even more the following year.”

Dial wrote that in order for ORU to compete with the NCAA’s minimum stipend for scholarship athletes, the university told him he would have to raise the money himself.

After months of “introspection”, Dial decided to resign in February. After a supposedly contentious final meeting with Johnson in which Dial told Johnson “I don’t want to be associated with people like you”, Johnson called a team meeting to announce that Dial would not be returning after the spring.

Dial said he received text messages congratulating him on his retirement before the meeting ended.

A university official told Tulsa World on Saturday that “there were no plans to push Dial back,” but Dial said in his post that Johnson told an unnamed friend of Dial that “when he took post at ORU, he had 2 problems to get rid of and he took care of them both now.

In its statement, ORU said:

“The ORU Athletic Department sincerely appreciates Coach Joe Dial’s many years of service and dedication and has never intended in any way to move on to a new Head Coach. “Coach Dial’s resignation came as a complete surprise. It has always been the Athletic Department’s purpose and highest value to serve and support our student-athletes and coaches in all sports, including track and field, with honor and integrity, including the construction of a new multimillion-dollar on-campus track and field facility.Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic has imposed budgetary constraints which have resulted in the implementation of decisions difficult by collegiate athletic programs nationwide, including within the ORU Athletic Department in several sports.Another conference member has completely disbanded his athletics program.We have and cont let us progress and work to return to our pre-pandemic level of support and scholarships, in the meantime we have operated within our available resources while continuing to provide our student-athletes with an athletic experience outstanding collegiate. The Athletic Department does not agree with any stories or claims that are inconsistent with these statements. We are saddened by Mr. Dial’s constant misunderstandings and his undeserved statements and assertions.

Dial told Tulsa World on Saturday that he has no plans to take any further action with the university.

“I just hope ORU gets another coach that the wonderful kids can move forward with,” Dial said.