GREEN BAY - Green Bay men's basketball coach Brian Wardle took the stage at the annual Phoenix-Packers Steak Fry fundraiser to a standing ovation. No question Wardle still has report, but he provided few answers. Wardle did not mention the current investigation he is facing during his speech in Lambeau Field's atrium.
Last Monday, an investigation started into allegations of verbal and emotional abuse by Wardle. The mother of former Phoenix player Ryan Bross sent a letter to the school, prompting the investigation. A second parent, the mother of former forward Brennan Cougill, sent a letter as well about Wardle's coaching.
Neither Wardle nor men's basketball players in attendance were available to talk to reporters during the fundraiser.
For the first time since the investigation started, Green Bay director of athletics Ken Bothof spoke about the situation. He did not provide specifics about the investigation.
"Don't take silence as a lack of support, for either Coach Wardle or the student athletes involved," said Bothof. "It really is an opportunity here to find out the truth, what is going on. We as a department are supportive of Coach Wardle in the process; we are [supportive] of the process. At the end of the day, we'll see where this leads us and we'll have further comments at that point."
On Tuesday, FOX 11 contacted Brooke Bross, mother of former player Ryan Bross, who sent the initial letter with allegations against Coach Wardle. She referred FOX 11 to her lawyer who, to this point, has not responded to a request for information.
Other members of the university administration continued to be quiet about any developments.
"I don't want you to think my not talking about this in more detail is a token of not caring," said Wisconsin-Green Bay chancellor Thomas Harden. "In fact, that is totally wrong."
On Tuesday, a university spokesman told FOX 11 the independent investigator looking into the situation has started contacting interested parties. The spokesman said there is still no timeline for the investigation.
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