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UT men's basketball coach arrested on domestic assault charge

A person in a suit with his hands on his hips
Chris Beard, then coach of the Texas Tech men's basketball team, stands on the sidelines during a March Madness game in 2019.

UT men's basketball head coach Chris Beard was arrested Monday morning on a third-degree felony charge.

Austin Police got a disturbance call around midnight from Beard's Tarrytown neighborhood. According to APD, a woman told responding officers that she had "been assaulted and strangled" by Beard. He was arrested and booked around 4 a.m. on a charge of assault on a household member impeding breath circulation.

Beard was later released on bond from Travis County Jail. Under the terms of his release, he must stay 200 yards away from the house and the alleged victim. If convicted, the 49-year-old could face up to 10 years in jail and a fine of up to $10,000.

UT announced Monday afternoon that it had suspended Beard without pay "until further notice."

"The University takes matters of interpersonal violence involving members of its community seriously," Scott McConnell, the assistant athletics director, said in a statement.

This is Beard’s second year at the helm in Austin after coaching at Texas Tech for five years. His seven-year contract pays him more than $5 million annually.

Beard led last year’s Longhorns squad to a 22-12 record that included the team’s first postseason victory since 2014. This year’s team was ranked as high as No. 2 nationally before losing their first game of the season last week to Illinois.

The team is scheduled to play Rice on Monday at the Moody Center. Associate Head Coach Rodney Terry will serve as acting head coach for the game.

This is a developing story.

KUT's Jerry Quijano contributed to this story.

Haya Panjwani is a general assignment reporter, with a focus on Travis County. Got a tip? Email her at Follow her on Twitter @hayapanjw.