Hall of Fame swimmer and USA Swimming vice president David Berkoff — whose 2010 email is the smoking gun establishing widespread knowledge of prominent coach Rick Curl’s sexual abuse of Kelley Davies Currin — told his hometown newspaper that he was “shocked” to see Curl on the pool deck at the 2012 Olympic Trials. See yesterday’s post.
Well, we are shocked at Berkoff’s shock.
But most of all, we wonder why Berkoff never did anything about it, before or after. To that question, there is no flattering answer for someone who so self-servingly alternates between grandiosity about his role and defiant apologies for his powerlessness and ineffectiveness.
Here are the facts.
In a May 2010 deposition, USA Swimming executive director Chuck Wielgus claimed he didn’t know why Curl moved to Australia.
Curl was in Australia from 2004 to 2009. Upon his return to the helm of his Curl-Burke Swim Club in the Washington, D.C., area, The Washington Post ran a long feature on his idyllic life on the beach Down Under and the valuable organizational lessons he learned from his employers at the legendary Carlile Swim Club.
In September 2012, Carlile representatives were the featured presenters at an event tied to the American Swimming Coaches Association convention in Las Vegas. And by the way, ASCA is so not-independent of USA Swimming that the agenda for the ASCA conference included a meeting there of USA Swimming’s steering committee.
Yet this is what Berkoff told The Independent of Missoula, Montana: “The last I had heard of Rick Curl he was in Australia and coaching there. I assumed he was long gone and would never come back to the United States because his past was catching up to him.”
Specifics of the above facts aside — maybe Berkoff was exceptionally stupid or out of the loop about Curl’s whereabouts — what prevented him from doing nothing more than turning to his wife in the stands at the CenturyLink Center in Omaha and professing himself “shocked”? This Harvard-educated lawyer had never heard of extradition laws? This member of the USA Swimming board of directors didn’t think it was his place to confront CEO Wielgus and ask what gives?