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Sabino HS Baseball Probe: Head coach resigns

Posted at 12:08 AM, Aug 27, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-27 08:27:10-04

An uncertain future for the Sabino High School baseball program -- recently crowned 3-A state champions. The head coach resigned just a few weeks after the district wrapped up its investigation into alleged illegal recruiting practices.

We have learned that head coach Mark Chandler announced to team players and their parents on Sunday that he's done with the program. They were told that assistant coach Jason Fallwell will not return as well.

This comes just a few weeks after the district wrapped up its investigation into claims that Chandler allegedly recruited players -- an A-I-A violation.

But that wasn't all. We investigated documents that revealed the coach has a history of violating district and A-I-A rules, including misusing booster club funds.

TUSD board president Michael Hicks says he's "surprised at the announcement and disappointed they decided to resign."

We reached out to Superintendent Gabriel Trujillo. He responded that Chandler decided to resign rather than face a disciplinary process. He did not address Fallwell's future on the team. 

Superintendent Trujillo's full statement: 

"Though I will not be commenting on specific consequences that may have been proposed, I will note that we notified the employee of our intention to initiate the employee disciplinary process, which features grievance and appeal rights for any employee engaged in the process.  Rather than engaging in that process and exercising the due process rights afforded him in that process as part of our district's consensus agreement, Coach Chandler informed us of his decision to resign his coaching duties at Sabino."