After nearly nine hours of statements and testimony and the countless replaying of videotape evidence Tuesday, Jimmy Lincoln was still the Eldon High School boys’ basketball coach.
At least he is until Friday, but maybe not beyond then.
Ultimately, that will be up to the seven members of the Eldon School Board.
At the conclusion of Tuesday’s public termination hearing, the school board went into closed session to discuss the coach’s future. The board reportedly met until about 1 a.m.
The school board is required to notify Lincoln within three days of its decision on whether to accept the recommendation of Superintendent Matt Davis to fire the coach for unsportsmanlike conduct.
“This is more than about wins and losses,” said Natalie Hoernschemeyer, an attorney for the school district, at Tuesday’s public termination hearing. “He admitted to violating the profanity policy. … You have more than sufficient evidence to terminate Mr. Lincoln.”
Both sides presented evidence during Tuesday’s public termination hearing, which was held at the Eldon Middle School gym to accommodate the crowd. Between 150 and 200 people were estimated to be in attendance, including some current and former EHS basketball players, parents of players and community leaders, who were there in a show of support for the coach.
The school district’s attorneys outlined six allegations against Lincoln, including a claim the coach elbowed an opposing player at the end of a summer shootout game in early June at School of the Osage. Lincoln, who has been the boys’ basketball coach at Eldon for the past three seasons, denied elbowing the player.
Lincoln acknowledged he used profanity, including when talking to a referee during a game at the summer shootout at Osage and during a radio broadcast immediately following a loss against Eugene last season.
The coach’s attorney, Michael McDorman, said, “This is not about a person being perfect. He has told you has made mistakes. … This is a breach of contract case.”
Lincoln, who signed a new one-year contract in May, refused to resign when asked to by Superintendent Davis.