Steve Sarkisian openly discusses alcohol rehab, being humbled in the public eye
New Texas coach Steve Sarkisian has rebuilt his career and public image following a speech at Southern Cal where he slurred his words during a preseason pep rally. Sarkisian, who was fired in October 2015, has since coached with the Atlanta Falcons and most recently as the offensive coordinator at Alabama.
At a press conference with reporters after he was introduced as the new Longhorns coach, Sarkisian said he would coach in the national championship game with Alabama on Jan. 11 against Ohio State. He also discussed his alcohol rehabilitation.
“I’m proud of the work that I’ve done. But I will say when you battle what I battle, you have to work on it every day,” he said. “When you’ve gone through what I’ve gone through in the public eye, I don’t want to say you’re humbled but you are.”
After his firing from Southern Cal, Sarkisian sued the school, and blamed his behavior on mixing alcohol with medication before the event. But he also reportedly showed signs of being intoxicated during a game and at a team meeting, the Associated Press reported.
Sarkisian sued for breach of contract and discrimination based on disability, alleging that the school fired him instead of allowing him to seek treatment for alcoholism. He lost a $30 million lawsuit that claimed he was improperly fired.