THE UNIVERSITY OF UTAH

Utah gymnastics coach probe finds no evidence of severe abuse

Sep 14, 2023, 3:43 PM

Utah’s head coach Tom Farden leads the team in a chant after winning the Pac-12 Gymnastics Champi...

FILE: Utah’s head coach Tom Farden leads the team in a chant after winning the Pac-12 Gymnastics Championships at the Maverik Center in West Valley City on March 18, 2023. (Ryan Sun, Deseret News)

(Ryan Sun, Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — An independent investigation into the women’s gymnastics program at the University of Utah found that head coach Tom Farden did not verbally or emotionally abuse the school’s student-athletes.

Further, the report from Husch Blackwell found no acts of physical or emotional abuse as defined by the SafeSport Code. The SafeSport code is a product of the U.S. Center for Safe Sport, which governs allegations of abuse in sports.

Utah gymnastics coach under fire

Former members of the Red Rocks gymnastics team, along with their parents, accused Farden of verbally and emotionally abusing them. They also claimed the coach physically threatened them. 

The Husch Blackwell review found that while some team members had negative experiences with Farden, he wasn’t abusive and didn’t engage in any harassment that violated policies.

In response, the University of Utah’s athletic department said it would work with Farden on ways to better engage with athletes under his charge. 

The university will also provide a Student-Athlete Advocate who will regularly attend gymnastics practices in the future.

This story will be updated.

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Utah gymnastics coach probe finds no evidence of severe abuse