Yale probes Tom Williams' Rhodes claim

Updated: November 18, 2011, 3:15 PM ET
Associated Press

NEW YORK -- Yale is investigating football coach Tom Williams' claim on his résumé to have been a candidate for a Rhodes scholarship at Stanford, the New York Times reported Friday.

The Times said the university began the review Thursday, a day after the newspaper reported officials of the Rhodes Trust said they had no records of Williams applying for the fellowship when he graduated from Stanford in 1992.

Williams, who took over as coach at Yale in 2009, referred to himself as a Rhodes candidate on his résumé and was referenced as a finalist recently in connection with Bulldogs quarterback Patrick Witt being a finalist for the scholarship this year.

Yale president Richard C. Levin said in a statement he has instructed the university's general counsel "to commence immediately a review of the facts surrounding Tom Williams' assertions about being a candidate for a Rhodes scholarship."

According to the Times, Williams said Wednesday night that Stanford endorsed him as a Rhodes candidate but that he did not advance as far as Witt had.

"I was in the preliminary stages at Stanford and I had to decide," he said. "But the interview wasn't official."

Williams reiterated that claim Thursday, saying he was endorsed to apply for the scholarship by a faculty adviser, but he didn't follow through.

"There is no intention to deceive," Williams said. "I never said I was a finalist for the Rhodes candidacy. The Rhodes shouldn't have any record of me, because I didn't do it. I didn't go through the process. I pulled out long before it got to that point."


Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press