A former UW-Whitewater football assistant coach shared information about the Warhawks’ defensive strategy with coaches at an opposing school ahead of the 2018 season, the La Crosse Tribune reported Sunday.
Another school eventually was given the information as well.
The defensive plans were shared as part of an email chain that originated from an account belonging to Craig Smith, UW-Whitewater’s offensive coordinator during the 2015, 2016 and 2017 seasons, the Tribune reported. Smith’s contract with UW-Whitewater was not renewed following the 2017 season.
Coaches at the University of Dubuque and UW-La Crosse were given Powerpoint files detailing UW-Whitewater’s defensive schemes, formations and code words, the Tribune reported.
Smith emailed Nelson Edmonds, a former UW-Whitewater assistant coach who serves as dean of student engagement and services at Dubuque. Nelson forwarded the email to head football coach Stan Zweifel, another former UW-Whitewater assistant coach, the Tribune reported.
Zweifel forwarded the plans to UW-La Crosse head coach Mike Schmidt on Aug. 22, 2018, the Tribune reported. Schmidt then forwarded the plans to four assistant coaches Sept. 17—less than two weeks before the Warhawks were scheduled to face the Eagles in La Crosse.
“I’m going to take the high road,” UW-Whitewater coach Kevin Bullis said Sunday of the Tribune’s investigation. “I don’t worry about the things I can’t control.
“Right now, we’re worrying about finalizing our 2019 recruiting class, and after that, we’ll concentrate on our 2019 spring practices.”
The detailed knowledge of UW-Whitewater’s defense didn’t seem to help either team. The Warhawks defeated Dubuque 38-6 on Sept. 1 and defeated UW-La Crosse 30-7 on Sept. 29.
The Tribune uncovered the emails containing UW-Whitewater’s defensive plans as part of an open records request into the resignation of former UW-La Crosse offensive coordinator Luke Bengston.