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Thursday, November 21
Mackovic status doesn't change after meeting

Associated Press

TUCSON, Ariz. -- The Arizona Board of Regents met Thursday and discussed, among other things, grievances levied by players against coach John Mackovic.

The coach's status did not change as a result of the meeting.

The regents metwith Peter Likins, president of University of Arizona, and discussed discord in the football team and with Mackovic, who apologized a week earlier for communication problems and verbal assaults on players.

Some players last week said his apology wasn't enough. However, the team then earned its first victory of the season by upsetting Cal, and Mackovic even was carried briefly by players.

"To me (the apology) is all a joke, a joke," Arizona junior cornerback Michael Jolivette had said. "It is hard for a person to change. That is his personality; that is him. He can't change his ways; he is a grown man. That is Mackovic."

Responding to those comments on ESPN Radio, Mackovic said Friday on The Dan Patrick Show: "Michael has never said it to my face. ... It hurts ... I plan to address it with him. ... He chose not to address the issue when he had the forum ... I have reached out through another play to see if he can get in here and talk about it."

Asked if he considered stepping down, Mackovic has said "No."

Regents said they trust university officials to properly handle the football program and the poor "communication'' skills acknowledged by Mackovic.

None of the regents have ever called for the dismissal of the coach or other university officials.

Nor did they criticize the university's decision to pay Mackovic an $878,000 annual salary, saying the market is competitive and top coaches must be given top dollars.

Regents said Likins and Jim Livengood, the university's athletics director, are capable of handling personnel problems and have a complete understanding of the market for college football coaches.

"It's disquieting to have this eruption at this point in time, but it's not my job to hire and fire football coaches and evaluate their progress,'' regent Fred Boice said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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