Girls bball coach dismissed after breast grabbing photo surfaces

POCATELLO, Idaho (AP) - A southeastern Idaho school district stood by its decision to dismiss a girls' basketball coach pictured on a social networking site with another coach touching her chest.

The Idaho State Journal reports Pocatello High School girls' basketball coach Laraine Cook was dismissed Tuesday.

Parents of girls on the team met with School District 25 officials Thursday, but failed convince district officials to reinstate Cook. A district spokeswoman called Cook's dismissal a personnel decision and hasn't confirmed why she was let go after guiding the team to a third-place finish in the 2013 state tournament.

Before her firing, a photo was posted on Cook's Facebook in which her boyfriend, Pocatello High varsity football coach Tom Harrison, is touching her chest. Harrison, a highly successful coach during his career in eastern Idaho, said he was reprimanded by officials and declined additional comment on the decision. | UPDATE: Former Coach Cook speaks out

"I would like to help you, but I can't at this time," Harrison told the newspaper. "It's a sad deal."

Meanwhile, Harrison's coaching career will continue. He has been a football coach in the state since 1982, with stints in Ririe, Raft River and Snake River. He has won 10 state football championships and was inducted into the Idaho High School Football Hall of Fame in 2000.

District administrators made the decision to fire Cook Tuesday evening, but Superintendent Mary Vagner agreed, after meeting with the parents, to initiate another review with Devine, Howell, Pocatello High Principal Don Cotant and Pocatello High Athletic Director Robert Parker.

Ultimately, administrators refused to change their position and have already started a search for new girls' basketball coach.


Information from: Idaho State Journal