NSU coach suspended for a week after DWI arrest

“I made a poor decision to get behind the wheel of a vehicle after drinking alcohol," Brad Laird says in statement of apology

NSU head football coach arrested on DWI charge, suspended for a week without pay

NATCHITOCHES, La. (KSLA) — Northwestern State University’s head football coach has been placed on administrative leave without pay for a week because he was arrested on a DWI charge Saturday night.

“Brad Laird informed me on Feb. 16 that he had been charged with a DWI the previous evening,” Northwestern State Athletics Director Greg Burke says in a statement the Natchitoches school’s athletics department released Monday.

“The university takes misconduct by any employee seriously and especially one with the level of responsibility of a head coach,” Burke continues.

After confirming that Laird had indeed been arrested, Burke met with him Monday morning and informed him that he would be suspended for a week without pay.

“He was also issued a letter of reprimand informing him of consequences that could result from any future misconduct that would violate the conditions of his contract with the university,” Burke’s statement continues.

The school says the letter outlines additional measures to be taken to address the incident. Those details were not released to the public.

"Having known Coach Laird for many years, I respect and was not surprised that he expressed regret about his lack of judgment in this incident and stated that it is his desire to learn from this matter and move forward as a better leader for the young men in the NSU football program,” Burke says in the statement.

Northwestern State said Laird issued the following statement:

“On Saturday night, Feb. 15, I made a poor decision to get behind the wheel of a vehicle after drinking alcohol. It was a poor and selfish decision, and I apologize to everyone who was unknowingly put at risk. I am extremely disappointed in this decision as this is not the type of behavior I instill in my players and staff. This was a lapse in judgement, and I take 100 percent responsibility for my actions. There are so many that are affected by my selfish decision. I would like to apologize to my family, Dr. Jim Henderson and the University Louisiana System, Dr. Chris Maggio and Northwestern State University, Mr. Greg Burke and the Northwestern State Athletic Department, and to the Northwestern State football players and coaches – past and present. As a role model for this great university and the players and coaches, I am disappointed as my actions were not in the best interest of my family, university, players and coaches. I completely understand there are consequences for all actions, and I accept the disciplinary terms that come with the decision I made Saturday night.”
— Brad Laird, head football coach at Northwestern State University in Natchitoches

The NSU athletics department said it will have no further comment on the matter because it is a personnel issue.

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