Don Hill-Eley may have coached his last football game at Morgan State University, with reports surfacing that the head coach will soon be dismissed after 11 years at the Baltimore university.
According to The Baltimore Sun, Hill-Eley acknowledged in a phone interview that he had unintentionally received a forwarded e-mail that described his planned dismissal.
“I don’t know what’s going on,” Hill-Eley, 43, told the paper.
According to the Sun report, the e-mail was originally written and sent by Morgan State Vice President of Student Affairs Kevin Banks, and was accidentally forwarded to Hill-Eley. The e-mail mentioned plans of the university interviewing for Hill-Eley’s successor in mid-December and would announce the new head coach in January. The e-mail also mentions that Hill-Eley still has one year left on his contract, saying he would serve that year out in another position assigned by the university.
Morgan State has not confirmed the content of the e-mail. MSU Athletics Director Floyd Kerr did not immediately return calls for comment.
Hill-Eley told the Sun he knew expectations had been raised since the new Morgan State President David Wilson took over two years ago, but claimed that a lack of resources made those expectations unrealistic to reach.
“He said the expectations had changed,” Hill-Eley said. “But the input didn't change, so how do you expect things to change on Saturday? It’s about resources, bottom line.”
“They think that just because they have a stadium, that's enough,” he told the paper. “But you look at a place like Towson [University], and they've significantly increased their investment in their program. I’m doing everything I can here, and the administration sits back and says I’m already getting enough.”
If fired, Hill-Eley will end his tenure with the third-most wins in Morgan State history behind college football legends Eddie Hurt and Earl Banks. Hill-Eley had instant success when he first took over as head coach for the Bears in 2002, leading the team to its first winning record since 1979.
Hill-Eley has been known for his offense coordinating skills, having coached several offense stars, including Visanthe Shiancoe and Chad Simpson, two Morgan grads who went on to play in the NFL. But the past three years have brought losing seasons, including a 3-8 record this season.