Updated January 5
KNOXVILLE, Tennessee, January 3. UNIVERSITY of Tennessee Vice Chancellor/Director of Athletics Dave Hart announced Tuesday that head men's swimming and diving coach John Trembley has been relieved of his duties. Assistant coach Lars Jorgensen will serve as the interim head coach for the program for the remainder of the season. WBIR in Knoxville reports that Trembley was dismissed for gross misconduct.
A day later, the Knoxville News Sentinel has reported that "a criminal investigation has been launched into the actions of" Trembley.
"The finding of gross misconduct led us to turn this case over to the proper law enforcement authorities," Margie Nichols, UT's vice chancellor for communications, said in a news release sent to the KNS. "Since this is an ongoing investigation, we are unable to comment further."
On Wednesday, Trembley's lawyer Donald Bosch released the following statement to the media:
Coach John Trembley has retained the services of Donald A. Bosch and the Bosch Law Firm, P.C., concerning the reports of a criminal investigation stemming from the information alleged to be the basis for his recent termination from the University of Tennessee. Coach Trembley looks forward to addressing the results from this investigation at the appropriate time. Until then, it is inappropriate for Coach Trembley or his counsel to make any further statements.
In a press release posted on its website on Tuesday, Tennessee stated:
Trembley was in his 23rd season as the head coach for the men's swimming and diving program and has served in that capacity since 1988. A 1975 graduate of UT who competed in swimming, Trembley served five years as an assistant for the Tennessee program from 1975-79 before assuming head coaching duties at Mercersburg Academy in Pennsylvania from 1980-88.
Jorgensen, who is a 1994 graduate and a former swimmer at UT, is in his second season with the Tennessee program after arriving at UT in August 2010 as an interim assistant before being promoted to full-time in 2011, assuming the position previously held by the late Joe Hendee. Before arriving in Knoxville, he served for six years as the head coach at Toledo and five years as an assistant coach and associate head coach at LSU.