Just 24 hours after South Florida native and New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez admitted to using performance-enhancing drugs from 2001-2003, University of Miami baseball head coach Jim Morris responded to the news.
“I am not in a position to talk about that,” Morris said. “The only thing I know about Alex [Rodriguez] is that he is a guy committed to the University of Miami. He originally signed with us. He is a great player that works hard and is always out here. He is a friend of mine, and I enjoy watching him play. He is as good as anybody in baseball.”
Rodriguez recently donated $4 million to UM, 3.9 of which went specifically to the baseball team and renovations for a new press box, weight room, video room, study lounge and wooden lockers. The stadium is set to be renamed Mark Light Field at Alex Rodriguez Park.
A-Rod signed a letter of intent to become a Hurricane after playing high school ball at Westminster Christian in Southwest Miami-Dade, but elected to go to the major leagues at the age of 18.
In an exclusive interview with ESPN on Monday, he confessed to using performance-enhancing drugs during his career with the Texas Rangers when he agreed to the then-most lucrative contract in sports history: $252 million over 10 years.
“I did take a banned substance and for that I am very sorry and deeply regretful,” Rodriguez said from his home in Miami.
Selena Roberts, the Sports Illustrated reporter who broke the story, confronted Rodriguez with the allegation at the Hecht Athletic Center last Wednesday.
The University of Miami preseason banquet is still scheduled for 6 p.m. Friday on the baseball diamond, with the 11-time all-star expected to be in attendance.
“[Rodriguez] spends more time at this ballpark working out and in our weight room than anybody I know of,” Morris said.