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Air Force football coach Troy Calhoun refuses questions on players' cocaine charges

Air Force football coach Troy Calhoun on the sidelines in November, 2016.

JOE GROMELSKI/STARS AND STRIPES

By TOM ROEDER AND BRENT BRIGGEMAN | The Gazette | Published: October 23, 2019

Air Force Academy football coach Troy Calhoun refused to answer questions about cocaine use by three of his players during a news conference Tuesday.

Calhoun is the Air Force's highest-paid employee, with a salary set at $725,000 per year plus generous bonuses in his 2013 contract, which has since been extended with accompanying pay raises.

Calhoun is required by his contract to foster and uphold conduct for his players by "creating the best possible environment for cadet character development."

Here are questions Calhoun faced Tuesday and his answers.

Question: With Kyler Ehm facing a court martial tomorrow, that makes three players with cocaine charges. Do you have any comment on that?

Troy Calhoun: Standards of the United States Air Force Academy.

Q: When these players are removed from the team, is there counseling provided for them? Do you wash your hands of it? What happens?

Calhoun: We’ll talk about our team.

Q: Are they no longer part of your team?

Calhoun: I’ll talk about the guys who are on our team.

Q: I’ve got a couple specific questions from our military reporter, Tom Roeder. He says, ‘Why do you think three players have been caught up in this specific type of drug use of late?'

Calhoun: It’s about our team.

Q: Is that going to be your response for everything?

Calhoun: We’re going to talk about our team. What do you have about our team?

Q: Is that not about your team? As the coach, you brought them in as part of your team.

Calhoun: What do you have about our current team? What do you have about guys on our team?

Q: They were recruits of yours at the Air Force Academy. They were attending with taxpayer money, taking spots from other people, do you not feel any responsibility for that?

Calhoun: Doesn’t mean you can’t take that. If there’s something you guys can get out of it in terms of a story, then do it. But they’re not on our team.

Q: It's not about a story, I’m asking about accountability.

Calhoun: I’m asking, are they on our team?

Q: They were, until you removed them for breaking the law.

Calhoun: If you’re not on our team then you’re not on our team.

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©2019 The Gazette (Colorado Springs, Colo.)
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