University of New Haven announced on Thursday that administrators hired an independent firm to investigate allegations of sexual impropriety against former women’s soccer coach Brendan Faherty, who coached at UNH from 2002 to 2009 and left his Yale post on Wednesday amid these revelations.

Faherty arrived at Yale in December 2018 following the resignation of Rudy Meredith, who was later implicated in the Varsity Blues college admissions scandal. On Monday, the News informed Yale administrators of former UNH players’ allegations against the coach: an alleged groping, an alleged consensual relationship and an alleged habit of drinking with players. On Wednesday, Vice President for Communications Nate Nickerson told the News that Faherty is no longer a Yale employee. He did not speak to whether Faherty resigned or was fired but told the News that administrators had conversations with the former coach about the allegations.

UNH officials did not respond to multiple requests for comment before the News broke the story late Wednesday night. On Thursday, UNH President Steven H. Kaplan alerted the school community of an independent investigation into the matter.

“Be assured that the University, and I personally as a parent and educator, are committed to maintaining a working and learning environment in which everyone feels safe, respected, and valued,” Kaplan stated. “There is absolutely zero tolerance for anyone who jeopardizes the safety or sense of self-worth of students, faculty, staff or any other member of the University family.

Kaplan added that the school will endeavor to find the facts and share as much as possible within the legal constraints concerning confidentiality.

In a Thursday statement to the News, Faherty’s lawyers, Theodore W. Heiser and Suisman Shapiro, said that Faherty denies the allegations.

“Mr. Faherty is deeply disappointed in the allegations from more than ten years ago that have been made in the Yale Daily News and the actions taken by Yale University in response to the report,” the statement reads. “He denies having engaged in any non-consensual relationships.  He further denies having any inappropriate sexual interaction or contact of any kind. Based upon the report, he is no longer employed at Yale.”

The allegations emerged from conversations with seven former UNH players, all of whom chose to remain anonymous.

“I am pleased that the University of New Haven responded quickly to these allegations,” said a former player of Faherty who was allegedly groped by the coach. “I hope that this investigation enables others to speak their truths, voice their concerns and promote healing.”

Another former player echoed that statement, writing that she is glad that UNH administrators are following up on the allegations and hopes that the investigation “gives strength to others who may have their own stories to tell.”

“I know these events took place years ago,” she continued, “but the frustration, anger, pain, and shock are all still very real.”

Before arriving at Yale, Faherty coached at UNH, the University of Massachusetts Amherst, University of Washington and Stony Brook University.

Mackenzie Hawkins |

Mackenzie is the editor in chief and president of the Managing Board of 2022. She previously covered City Hall for the News, including the 2019 mayoral race and New Haven's early pandemic response. Originally from the San Francisco Bay Area, she is a junior in Trumbull College studying ethics, politics and economics.