DENVER – CSU men’s basketball interim coach Steve Barnes, who was put in charge of the team after head coach Larry Eustachy was put on administrative leave last week has been suspended, Colorado State Athletic officials said Saturday.
“Colorado State University Director of Athletics Joe Parker today placed Coach Steve Barnes on paid administrative leave pending the outcome of an ongoing climate assessment Parker is leading of the men’s basketball program,” the statement reads.
Assistant coach Jase Herl will coach the team as the Rams take on San Jose State on Saturday afternoon.
Parker did not provide a reason as to why Barnes was placed on administrative leave, but our partners at The Denver Post report team sources said players spoke up about their concerns playing for Barnes in a meeting with the athletic director on Friday.
Barnes took over Eustachy following an announcement from the athletic director more than a week ago, in which he said the school was performing the climate assessment following a report published online by former Rocky Mountain Collegian sports editor Justin Michael who said Parker was interviewing players about Eustachy's conduct.
The university looked into Eustachy in 2013-14 for creating an atmosphere of "fear and intimidation" among his players. In documents obtained by the Coloradoan nearly a year ago, Eustachy acknowledged he "crossed the line" when asked about the atmosphere within the program by former athletic director Jack Graham.
The Post reports Eustachy is expected to be fired next week pending the completion of climate assessment investigation.