Alabama AD Greg Byrne fires head baseball coach Brad Bohannon amid betting scandal

On3 imageby:On3 Staff Report05/04/23

The Alabama baseball team has made a surprising decision, firing baseball coach Brad Bohannon midseason for violating the standards, duties and responsibilities of university employees, according to a report by AL.com beat reporter Mike Rodak.

“Alabama director of athletics Greg Byrne announced he has initiated the termination process for head baseball coach Brad Bohannon for, among other things, violating the standards, duties, and responsibilities expected of University employees,” the program released in an emailed statement Thursday. “Bohannon has been relieved of all duties and Jason Jackson will serve as the interim head coach. There will be no further comment at this time pending an ongoing review.” 

The firing comes just days after news of a potential betting scandal involving suspicious betting activity on Alabama games came to light.

The reports of a potential betting scandal led SEC commissioner Greg Sankey to release a statement earlier this week.

“We are aware of reports related to the suspension of wagering on Alabama baseball games,” Sankey said. “We will continue to monitor available information and any regulatory activity.

“As many states have acted to legalize sports gambling, we are reminded of the threats gambling may pose to competitive integrity. Together with our member universities, we will continue to emphasize the importance of regulating, overseeing, and providing education related to sports gambling activity.”

The Ohio Casino Control Commission first reported “suspicious wagering activity” at the BetMGM sportsbook at Great American Ballpark in Cincinnati, Ohio, involving the Alabama-LSU game on Friday and multiple states began to halt bets on Alabama baseball, according to ESPN.

According to Ronnie Johns, the chairman of the Louisiana Gaming Control Board, via a report from NOLA.com, two bets were under scrutiny, including one large bet.

“There were a couple of bets made in Cincinnati, Ohio,” Johns said. “One was on a parlay which involved the LSU-Alabama game, and then there was another straight-up (money line) bet, I was told it was a large bet that involved LSU-Alabama.”

Johns confirmed the bets were on the Tigers to win, leading him to believe the suspicious activity didn’t come from the LSU side.

“That in itself indicates that there’s definitely no suspicious activity on the part of LSU,” Johns said. “You don’t typically suspect the team that was picked to win the game. The problem would have been whether someone on the Alabama side was suspicious of activity.”

The Alabama athletics program also commented on the situation with an official statement provided to On3’s Andy Wittry on Tuesday night.

“Alabama Athletics became aware of this situation Monday evening and is actively seeking information about the report.”

Bohannon was in his sixth season coaching the program after arriving as an assistant with Auburn.

Before Brad Bohannon was fired, in his seven seasons with the Crimson Tide he compiled a 166-124 overall record, while notching a 48-91 SEC mark. Alabama never had a season above .500 in SEC play under his watch.

Alabama is scheduled to host a three-game SEC series against Vanderbilt starting on Thursday night, with first pitch scheduled for 8 p.m. ET with a broadcast on ESPNU.

Jason Jackson will serve as the team’s interim coach.