Propst placed on administrative leave

Propst placed on administrative leave

VALDOSTA – Valdosta High School head football coach Rush Propst was placed on administrative leave earlier this week.

Propst was placed on administrative leave March 9, according to documents in Propst’s Valdosta City Schools personnel file obtained through an open records request filed by The Valdosta Daily Times. 

The Georgia Professional Standards Commission confirmed Thursday it has received a formal complaint from Valdosta City Schools regarding Propst.

But the PSC would not provide details on the case.

In a statement from Valdosta City Schools, Superintendent Dr. William “Todd” Cason said, “I am aware of the questions surrounding the VHS football coach.  This is a personnel matter that is currently under investigation; therefore I am not at liberty to discuss details about the topic.”

On Monday, a video surfaced of a recording of an alleged conversation between former VHS Touchdown Club director Mike “Nub” Nelson and Propst.

During the conversation, a person believed to be Propst alleged the University of Georgia and Alabama paid recruits anywhere from $90,000 to $100,000 to sign with their respective institutions.

Among the claims made was that former Georgia running back Nick Chubb got paid $180,000 in three installments to return to Georgia for his senior year.

Chubb responded to the allegation on Twitter, “If i needed money i would have went pro #fakenews”

On Feb. 25, Propst said he was unaware of being the focus of an investigation and Valdosta City Schools is reviewing allegations made against the coach in a recent court deposition.

The 64-page deposition makes numerous claims, including money intended for advertising being personally pocketed, tampering with the coach search that hired Propst and requests for “funny money” to pay rent for recruits and their families to stay in Valdosta.

One player mentioned in the deposition is quarterback Jake Garcia, who played one game for the Wildcats before later being ruled ineligible by the Georgia High School Association. Garcia eventually moved to Grayson High School and led the Rams to a state championship.

The deposition is part of a wrongful termination lawsuit filed against the Valdosta Board of Education by former Valdosta coach Alan Rodemaker.

When contacted by The Valdosta Daily Times in late February, the veteran coach did not comment on the allegations and told The Times he is not aware of any investigation involving him.

Valdosta City Schools released the following statement Feb. 25:

“Valdosta City Schools takes all allegations seriously and works with all appropriate organizations and/or agencies to complete investigations following the letter of the law.

“Superintendent of VCS, Dr. William “Todd” Cason, is aware of the information shared in the recently released deposition. As with all personnel matters of Valdosta City Schools, we will not be able to expand on investigation details.”

This story will be updated as it develops.

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