Friday, December 28, 2012
New England Roundup: Maine
By Matt DiFilippo
Earlier this month, we reported on Denis Collins, the Bangor High School hockey coach who resigned after a player allegedly urinated into a jug on the team bus and the subsequent investigation by the school.
Recently, Collins spoke about both his second meeting with administrators, and a later meeting with school superintendent Betsy Webb.
On Dec. 14, three days after the alleged incident on Bangor's trip to Presque Isle, Collins resigned, and says he was told at that point by school administrators to "man up" and stay on as coach.
Collins said there was another meeting on Monday, Dec. 17. He said he went in with the idea of remaining as Bangor's coach, but was told by school administrators that they were accepting his resignation.
According to Collins, Bangor principal Paul Butler became upset during the meeting.
"The conversation got extremely heated between the principal and myself, to the point where I felt that it was best that I not be in there," Collins said. "He was very, very aggressive to me. He was hostile. It was not a safe environment. I resigned under duress, because I felt it was not a safe environment for me to be there."
Butler is not commenting publicly on the whole incident. He recently told the Bangor Daily News, "Denis has already shared beyond what I can share because I'm bound by confidentiality."
Collins met with Webb on Dec. 21. He said he outlined things he had done for the program, including putting in money out of his own pocket. He said the meeting ended during a conversation that "got off track" about policies. At that point, Collins said, Webb replied, "I'm done with this" and the meeting ended.
"I'm waiting for a response from the superintendent of schools," Collins said. "Am I fired. What's going to happen?"
Collins said he believes the school will obtain legal counsel. Asked if he himself would consider getting legal counsel, Collins said. "If they try to sweep under the carpet that the principal was hostile with me, I think I will."
Collins said he still follows the Bangor team, which is 4-0, but has not played at home since his resignation. He said he keeps in touch with several players on the team.
"Do the kids talk to me? Absolutely," he said. "I have about seven or eight of them who will call me from the Bangor team."
Boys' Hoop Top 10 1. Hampden - Broncos allowed 13 points through three quarters in showdown with Lawrence.
2. Deering - Labson Abwoch and Dominic Lauture lead an explosive offense.
3. Portland - Balanced offense helped Bulldogs in close wins over Bonny Eagle and Scarborough.
4. Edward Little - Red Eddies are averaging 70.4 ppg.
5. Falmouth - Five new starters, but Yachtsmen have still won every game by at least 18 points.
6. South Portland - Red Riots are unbeaten with defense and point guard Tanner Hyland.
7. Bonny Eagle - Star guard Dustin Cole is coming off a 42-point game against Gorham.
8. York - Wildcats haven't been tested; that will change Jan. 3 vs. Falmouth.
9. Bangor - Only team to play Hampden tough so far.
10. Lawrence - Bulldogs have bounced back from Hampden debacle; may be sleeper in February.
Girls' Hoop Top 10 1. McAuley - Of first five wins, only one was by less than 49 points.
2. Deering - No team's scored more than 35 against Rams, let alone 40 or 50.
3. Scarborough - Red Storm still rolling under new coach.
4. Presque Isle - Wildcats may get a test in upcoming game with Mt. Desert Island.
5. Cheverus - Lady Stags scoring almost 60 ppg, allowing 23.2.
6. Mt. Ararat - Eagles could be undefeated when they face Brewer on Jan. 11.
7. Edward Little - Red Eddies could win Eastern A if they clean some things up.
8. South Portland - Next week will tell whether Red Riots truly belong on this list.
9. Lake Region - Lakers can score with anyone, and play defense, too.
10. Bangor - Rams next three games (Oxford Hills, Edward Little, Lawrence) will reveal a lot.
Boys' Hockey Top 10 1. Thornton - Lost to Class B Greely, but still a talented group.
2. Lewiston - Devon Beland and Kyle Lemelin lead powerful Blue Devils offense.
3. Scarborough - Red Storm have a deep offense and goalie Dalton Finley helps them win close games.
4. Falmouth - Only losses are by a goal apiece to Lewiston and Scarborough
5. Bangor - Rams lost coach, but have yet to lose a game.
6. St. Dominic - 1-2-1 in first four games, but they were against top four teams on this list.
7. Greely - Rangers have scored 23 goals in four games.
8. Biddeford - Tigers face Thornton and Falmouth in next two games.
9. Brunswick - January will be the real test for Dragons.
10. Camden Hills - Windjammers have four players with at least five goals.