Use of slur alleged in baseball manager’s firing

San Benito High School named Jason Bugg the varsity baseball

San Benito High School on Tuesday fired first-year varsity
baseball manager Jason Bugg after accusations arose that during a
recent game, he directed an antigay term at a Baler player.
San Benito High School on Tuesday fired first-year varsity baseball manager Jason Bugg after accusations arose that during a recent game, he directed an antigay term at a Baler player.

The player’s parent reported the incident to the school, according to multiple sources, alleging it occurred during San Benito’s game May 6 at Palma High School. Multiple sources with direct knowledge of the situation have confirmed that Bugg uttered profanities at the player and called him the derogatory term.

A source close to the situation said a letter was written, detailing the incident, and submitted by the player’s parent to school administrators, while several other sources familiar with reasons for the firing confirmed the account.

San Benito High School administrators have declined to respond about the use of the derogatory term or Bugg’s firing, other than to confirm that he is no longer with the program.

Several sources have contended that there have been other issues with the coach using inappropriate language over the course of the season.

Bugg did not return phone messages detailing the reasons for his firing and requesting comment.

On Tuesday, prior to San Benito’s scheduled home game against Alisal, players were called in for a team meeting. There, Principal Krystal Lomanto and Athletic Director Tod Thatcher announced that assistant coaches Billy Aviles and Mike Granger would be taking over the coaching duties for the remainder of the season. At that point, the rest of the schedule included three regular season games as well as next week’s Central Coast Section Division I Championships.

Aviles and Granger coached the Balers during their 21-0 victory over Alisal later that day, a win that helped San Benito seal at least a share of its sixth straight Tri-County Athletic League title.

On Wednesday, Lomanto responded by e-mail confirming the departure.

“Jason Bugg is no longer with us,” the e-mail read. “I am unable to comment on a personnel matter.”

Thatcher also confirmed Bugg will not be returning to his position as the varsity manager of the Haybalers and that the job will be opened up at the conclusion of the season.

Bugg was in his first season coaching the team. Announced in November as the program’s new varsity skipper, he replaced Michael Luna at the San Benito helm this season.

Having previously coached at San Leandro High, American High in Fremont and Athenian High in Danville, Bugg also had coaching stints at San Jose State University, Chabot College and Mission College.

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