AUSTIN, Texas — Early Monday morning, the University of Texas community woke up to learn the head men's basketball coach, Chris Beard, was arrested overnight under accusations of domestic violence.
Police responded to a Tarrytown residence after receiving reports of a domestic disturbance after midnight. Officials told KVUE that Beard is accused of strangling a person at the home.
Beard was eventually arrested and booked into the Travis County Jail at 4:18 a.m. His bond was set at $10,000 and, among other restrictions, he was ordered to stay more than 200 yards from the residence. Beard has since been released.
The coach was charged with the third-degree felony of "assault on a family/household member-impede breath circulation."
Meanwhile, his attorney, Perry Minton, has said his client remains innocent. He said the complainant, who has not yet been named, wants Beard released immediately and all charges dismissed.
Regarding Beard's future, UT provided the following statement Monday evening:
"The University takes matters of interpersonal violence involving members of its community seriously. Given the information available, The University has suspended Chris Beard from his position as head coach of Men's Basketball and will withhold his pay until further notice. Associate Head Coach Rodney Terry will serve as acting head coach for tonight's game against Rice."
The Texas Longhorns are expected to host Rice Monday night at the Moody Center at 7 p.m.
This is Coach Terry's second stint at Texas, as he was a member of Rick Barnes' staff from 2002-2011. He then spent 10 seasons as a head coach, first at Fresno State then at the University of Texas - El Paso.
Last week, the Longhorns told KVUE that Terry introduced a new motto to the group, telling them "teams find out who they are in November, and they stamp it in December."
Click here to view the rest of the basketball team's schedule.
According to a report from KVUE's news partners at the Austin American-Statesman, when Beard was hired at Texas, he received a seven-year contract with an annual salary of $5 million.
A clause in that contract allows UT to fire or suspend Beard with cause if, "any conduct (a) that the university administration reasonably determines is clearly unbecoming to a head coach and reflects poorly on the university, the program, or the university of texas system; or (b) resulting in a criminal charge being brought against head coach involving a felony, or any crime involving theft, dishonesty, or moral turpitude."
This is a standard clause in UT coaching contracts, the Statesman reported.
If you or someone you know is experiencing domestic violence and needs help, you can find local resources through the National Domestic Violence Hotline. For 24/7 assistance, call 800-799-7233 or text “START” to 88788.