Can They Do That?

Coach Andy Demick was suspended for one game in the Cedar Bluff-Farragut Optimist girls softball league because the commissioner said his assistant coaches were abusive toward an umpire. Demick, who has been a coach for three or four years, insisted on taking it past Commissioner Don Hutcheson and appealed to the executive committee. Hutcheson advised Demick that might be a mistake. He said it was better to keep the matter between them and off the record. Demick pressed his case.

The executive committee met with Demick and he is now been banned from the league for life. They have also banned his wife and softball-playing children permanently, according to a letter from Demick's lawyer to the county mayor's office, county commissioners, the park and recreation department, and the executive committee.

In an exchange of e-mails, Hutcheson said Demick was not banned for his actions that resulted in a one-game suspension, but for his disrespectful attitude and rudeness to the executive committee when they met.

Attorney Chris Cain asks for reconciliation and reinstatement for Demick and his family or suggests legal action will be forthcoming. The eight-page single-spaced letter reads like a legal brief and says Demick was denied the opportunity to present witnesses or have due process before he was banned.

Several e-mails are attached in which Hutcheson calls Demick a good coach and complains about his attitude. The last e-mail from Commissioner Hutcheson to Coach Demick, dated June 14: "After careful thought, I have decided that you and your family will not be allowed to participate in CBFO Softball in the future. This also includes all CBFO Sports. I am sending this to yu (sic) now so that you will have ample time to find a place for your daughters. My decision is final."