Keene State College dive coach David Mason has been put on a leave of absence pending further investigation of an alleged incident which is supposed to have taken place in September of 2015 at Monadnock Regional High School, where Mason was a physical education teacher.

Mason, who was also the Owls’ head coach in the 1980s and 1990s, was put on administrative leave by Keene State College sometime before the start of spring semester.

Interim Swimming and Diving Head Coach Chris Woolridge declined to comment on his colleague’s situation, but did state that he has been coaching the Owls’ divers in Mason’s absence.

Senior diver Cody Fitzgerald commended Woolridge for doing what he can to make up for Mason not being able to help out on the pool deck.

“He’s been as good of a replacement as we could ask for,” Fitzgerald said.

Still, Fitzgerald said he thinks that as long as Mason is gone, improvement will be hard to come by. “His absence has definitely been a negative in our practices because it’s hard to move forward with dives when you’re missing your head coach,” Fitzgerald said.

Vice President of Student Affairs and Interim Athletic Director Kemal Atkins declined to comment on Mason’s situation other than to say it is unknown when a decision regarding Mason’s alleged incident will be made, but in the meantime, he will not be coaching at KSC.

“Conclusions are being drawn before anything is proven and it seems like it’s more of a ‘guilty until proven innocent’ type of system here,” Fitzgerald said.

The Equinox is actively investigating further and will publish updates as they become available.

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