Legendary coach Cliff McCrath isn't about to head into the sunset quietly.
Ten days after Seattle Pacific University announced that the 71-year-old McCrath had resigned only nine wins short of tying the college record for wins held by Joe Bean of Wheaton College (where he had gotten his start in coaching in 1958), McCrath told the Seattle Post-Intelligencer that he had received almost 900 e-mails of support.
"Cliff McCrath got fired?" former U.S. women's star Michelle Akers, who grew up in Seattle, wrote the Seattle P-I. "Shut up. You have got to be kidding me. My jaw still sits on the floor as I write this."
A dozen coaches have threatened to boycott SPU, saying they'd no longer play the Falcons unless McCrath got his job back.
In announcing of his retirement, McCrath said he and the SPU administration "concurred it might be a good time for 'The Nubber' to head for that storied sunset!" He now says he was asked to resign.
Seattle Pacific President Philip Eaton blamed the outcry on the media for leaping "to conclusions without knowing what they are talking about."
McCrath led the Falcons to five NCAA championships and won 597 victories in his 49 years of college coaching.
Assistant coach Mark Collings, a 2002 graduate of SPU, was appointed to replace McCrath.