MU Head Football Coach Gary Pinkel Arrested for DWI

Nov 17, 2011

MU Football Coach Gary Pinkel has issued an apology today for what he calls a “lack of judgment,” following his arrest last night by Boone County Sherriff’s deputies on suspicion of Driving While Intoxicated. Meanwhile, MU Chancellor Brady Deaton says the Athletics Department has his support in taking the “appropriate action.”


Boone County Sherriff’s Department Major Tom Reddin says Pinkel was arrested last night, taken to Boone County Jail, and posted $500 bond on a first-time DWI offense.

Reddin says deputies observed “lane and signal violations” and stopped Pinkel around 10:15 last night, on Columbia’s Keane Street just north of Broadway.

MU’s Athletics Department today issued a statement from Pinkel, who said – quote – “Nobody should drink and drive, including me.”

In a separate statement Athletics Director Mike Alden called the incident a “very serious breach” of Pinkel’s responsibilities. He said when the appropriate actions have been determined, they will be announced publicly.

In a written statement, Chancellor Deaton says he expects Coach Pinkel to “accept full responsibility for his actions.”

The Athletics Dept. scheduled a press availability with Alden for 4 o’clock this afternoon.

Gary Pinkel's full statement, released by email from MU's Athletics Department:  “Last night after practice, I met some friends for dinner.  After dinner, I was stopped by a Boone County officer and received a citation for impaired driving.  First and foremost, I am very disappointed in myself for my lack of judgment in this instance.  Nobody should drink and drive, including me.  My staff and I constantly reinforce with each of our players the importance of not putting yourself into a position such as this.  I did not follow that here and for that, I sincerely apologize to the University of Missouri, to our administration, to the Board of Curators and to our fans.  I have already met with our staff and communicated with our players and have apologized to them.  I accept full responsibility for my actions and will abide by whatever course of action our leadership deems appropriate.”

The release also included this statement from Director of Athletics Mike Alden: “We are extremely disappointed in Gary’s lack of judgment.  He is known as a man of great character and integrity.  However, this absolutely goes against everything we stand for, and everything that he teaches his players in regards to our social responsibilities.  We hold ourselves to very high standards, and this is a very serious breach of those responsibilities.  We are gathering facts and will take action appropriately, and when those actions are determined, we will communicate them publicly.”

University of Missouri Chancellor Brady Deaton also issued a separate statement: “I was deeply disappointed to hear the news about Coach Pinkel. Coaches must hold themselves to the very highest of standards. His lack of judgment is especially concerning since he serves as a role model for our students. I expect Mike Alden to take appropriate action and he has my support in doing so. I also expect and believe that Coach Pinkel will accept full responsibility for his actions and will act in accordance with the standards he expects from his players.”