Before he was paid millions of dollars as head coach at Ole Miss, Hugh Freeze was a highly successful coach at Briarcrest Christian School in Eads, Tenn.
With the sudden fall of Freeze and his resignation last week due to a pattern of personal misconduct, the school is now facing questions on whether that pattern was also prevalent during his times at the evangelical school.
“Our current administration and former administrators who we’ve talked to — and we’ve talked to many — we are totally unaware of any allegations against Coach Freeze regarding any kind of inappropriate personal conduct while he was here at Briarcrest,” Briarcrest director of communications Beth Rooks said. “We would take any such allegations seriously and we would fully investigate it. Our objective is to deal with any issues truthfully and objectively. There’s all these rumors and innuendo, but there hasn’t been proof of anything. We’ve never had any parent or student or anybody come to us.”
While stating that there are no allegations as of right now, a school spokesperson did acknowledge that a private Facebook group that is centered around a “victim of Coach Freeze at Briarcrest” did exist. That account was deleted on Monday night.
Briarcrest was brought into the spotlight thanks to Freeze and former Ole Miss offensive lineman Michael Oher, the person that the book and film The Blind Side was centered around. Oher’s father, Sean Tuohy, has stated that he will not give up on Freeze.
“I’m never going to stop being his friend,” Tuohy said. “I’m never going to stop loving him. When he needs me, I’ll be there.”
With Freeze’s presence still widespread at Briarcrest – his photo is on the wall as a member of the school’s Hall of Fame -, the school has a choice: to celebrate the success he brought the Saints in football and women’s basketball, or separate themselves from him.