KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) –A University of Missouri-Kansas City (UMKC) coach is accused of inappropriate behavior. However, he’s still coaching after an investigation was complete.
Former UMKC softball player Abby Warkentine believes the report reveals a different side of assistant softball coach Greg Bachkora.
“I actually reached out to many of my teammates who are still on the team and said, ‘tell me if this is true because this is not the man I know.’ And every single one of them said ‘no,’” Warkentine said.
He’s accused of unsolicited and inappropriate behavior in a Title XI investigation.
In the complaint, three former student-athletes claim Bachkora entered and remained in the locker room on multiple occasions without announcing himself. Warkentine said it didn’t happen while she was there.
“Male and female coaches always announced their presences,” Warkentine explained.
The report also says, Coach Bach, as some players called him, kissed players on the forehead and cheek while the team was playing and on the practice field.
KCTV5 spoke to another one of his former athletes who read the report.
“I was just incredibly shocked, that is absolutely not the person I know,” Mallory Goulding, who is a former player of Bachkora’s, said.
Goulding said she played for Coach Bach’s softball team at Benedictine College in 2012. Her relationship with him was very close.
“I was sexually assaulted when I was in college, he was one of the people who helped me the most get through that,” Goulding stated.
The two former athletes don’t want to suggest they’re not supportive of the women in the report, but they feel strongly about defending him.
Some UMKC students had a different reaction.
“I do feel bad for the girl that felt uncomfortable because I would hate to go to practice every day and deal with that,” Brenda Reed, who is a Freshman, said.
According to the UMKC website, Coach Bachkora joined the Roos two years ago. He started his career at Benedictine College with a couple of other stops before UMKC.
Another claim in the title nine complaint said, “he made crude jokes to an opposing coach that referenced a player’s private part.”
He said he made this comment, “that’s one way to catch a ball” to an opposing coach after a player fielded a ground ball when it hit her in her private part. He says it did not include explicit language.
Bachkora also admitted he entered the locker room on multiple occasions to use the microwave but he says he always announced himself first and never saw any athletes while they were changing clothes. He said he kissed players on their forehead or check in a fatherly way, not sexual.
Despite the claims, at least two former players stand with him.
The university released a statement:
UMKC received a single Title IX complaint regarding assistant coach Greg Bachkora. Like all complaints involving any form of discrimination or harassment, this was taken very seriously by everyone involved at UMKC. The Title IX office determined that the actions constituted inappropriate activity that did not rise to the level of a policy violation. A written warning was placed in his personnel file.
UMKC softball alumnae and parents of current players have expressed support for Coach Bachkora on social media and stated they believe his version of events as detailed in the Title IX report. Contrary to published reports, UMKC never purchased a microwave oven for Mr. Bachkora.