Five years of "bullying" by parents finally pushed Roseville boys' hockey coach Jeff Pauletti out of the sport he loves, he said after he resigned Tuesday.
Pauletti, accused of mistreating players, took action on Tuesday by resigning as coach and showing up for a Roseville District school board meeting with a speech prepared.
"I'm not very happy about the whole situation," Pauletti said before taking the podium. "But in order to state my piece and keep my sanity and keep my health, I think it was the right decision [to resign]."
In order to speak publicly about the investigation, the coach of nine years had to resign or he would have been fired.
Several supporters preceded Pauletti in the board meeting, each followed by a standing ovation. Then, at the price of his job, the coach had his platform.
Gripped in his hand were carefully constructed words refuting allegations of bullying and even fraud. Speaking beyond the allotted five minutes guests are given to speak, he made the case that coaches are being bullied today and that his resignation is an example of "helicopter parents" ruining youth sports.
"I won't beat around the bush on this issue. I've been waiting for months to respond to this, and I feel it's my time," Pauletti said.
Former and current players were in attendance. The news of his resignation brought some to tears.
"I was pretty shocked," senior Tom Bartel said. "I couldn't believe it's been taken this far. It's all garbage."
Pauletti's accusers did not speak during the meeting, and they and their lawyer were unavailable for comment.