Eric Murdock claims Mike Rice treated players “like slaves” in recording

Matt Sugam

Eric-Murdock-300Just how bad did it get between former Rutgers head coach Mike Rice and his assistant coach Eric Murdock?

Murdock claims Rice treated his players “like slaves” in an 11-minute recording that was secretly taken by assistant coach Jimmy Martelli on June 29, 2012.

“Just cracking the whip,” Murdock, who is black, said on the recording, which was obtained by The Chronicle of Higher Learning through a public-records request. “That’s all you’re doing. You’re cracking the whip…[when a player] can’t deliver you cut his toe off like…Kunta Kinte.”

Murdock is speaking to two assistant coaches in the tapes about Rice’s abusive ways, saying how they were unable to rein Rice in from his abusive ways over the last two years.

“I tried it two years,” Murdock says. “We had our conversations about how he needs to be more positive…He doesn’t listen.”

Murdock was mainly addressing associate head coach David Cox during the recording, and Cox remains mostly silent.

“We’ve all have bitten our tongues,” Murdock said. “Because why? Because he’s the boss, and you’ve got to respect the boss. I’ve done that. I’ve done that. I respected the boss for two years, even though there’s a lot of things I disagree with. I respected my position, and didn’t say anything. Didn’t. Whatever you want me to do, I’m doing it.”

Murdock’s contract was not renewed by Rutgers at the end of June 2012. Murdock is seeking to claim $950,000 settlement in an employment dispute with the university for wrongful termination.

Rice was fired in April after videos were released of him physically and verbally abusing players.

(Warning: Tape has obscenities)

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