Connecticut women's basketball coach Geno Auriemma is the target of a discrimination lawsuit filed Monday by an NBA security official that alleges he grabbed and forcibly tried to kiss her at a 2009 tournament — then pulled strings to get her dropped from the U.S. Olympic team's security detail for the 2012 Olympics in London.
Kelley Hardwick, listed as the WNBA's director of security, alleges that Auriemma followed her to her hotel room from a bar during the Olympic team's trip to the 2009 Ekaterinburg International in Russia, then grabbed her left arm and tried to kiss her, only to be rebuffed. Hardwick also says she was willing to drop the situation after discussing it with players on the team Auriemma was coaching and other security officials upon her return, but says she learned in March that the CEO of USA Basketball asked the NBA to have her removed from the Olympic security detail at Auriemma's behest.
In an email to the New York Times, Auriemma wrote, "I was unaware of this lawsuit until hearing about it in media reports today and therefore will have no comment."
Auriemma has coached at Connecticut for 27 years, winning seven national titles, and has been the head coach of the U.S. national team since April 2009.
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