Homicide

College basketball coach resigns after comments on murdered Baylor player

Dave Bliss in 2003.

Dave Bliss in 2003.  (REUTERS/Jeff Mitchell)

Former Baylor University basketball coach Dave Bliss has resigned from his head coaching position at Southwestern Christian University after issuing controversial comments in a recent Showtime documentary about the 2003 murder of a Baylor basketball player at the hands of his teammate.

It was announced Monday night that the 73-year-old Bliss offered his resignation from the Oklahoma City school, which participates in National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics and hired him in 2015. Although no reason was given for his resignation, it comes after Showtime aired its "Disgraced" documentary last month highlighting the 2003 murder of student-athlete Patrick Dennehy.

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On June 12, 2003, Dennehy, a Baylor forward, was shot dead at the age of 21 by his teammate, friend and roommate Carlton Dotson. Bliss later stepped down as head coach of the Baptist university's basketball team after it emerged that he encouraged players to lie about Dennehy in order to cover up the fact that he was paying for Dennehy's scholarship. Bliss claimed that Dennehy was selling drugs, which was a charge leveled without evidence.

Bliss agreed to be interviewed for the Showtime documentary about the ordeal and the documentary featured a number of interview segments with Bliss and others involved in the scandal. During a moment that Bliss thought he was off camera, he again claimed that the deceased was a drug dealer.

"He (Dennehy) was selling drugs. He sold to all the white guys on campus," Bliss asserted. "He was the worst."

In a separate phone interview with the Houston Chronicle, Bliss doubled down on his claims made in the documentary.

However, others in the documentary, including Waco police, said that there was no evidence to suggest that Dennehy was dealing drugs.

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