Zaatini to pay ETSU more than $31,000

Joe Avento • Mar 24, 2017 at 8:28 PM

Yaser Zaatini, who abruptly resigned as East Tennessee State University’s tennis coach last week, is paying the school more than $31,000.

In his letter to ETSU President Brian Noland, obtained through a Tennessee Open Records request filed after his resignation was announced, Zaatini wrote “In conjunction with my resignation, I waive all annual leave accruals and have executed the enclosed promissory note promising to pay the university $31,293.13 consistent therewith.

“In connection with this resignation I make no admission of malfeasance.”

Zaatini resigned on March 16. ETSU officials have not commented on the reason.

Zaatini is in the ETSU Hall of Fame after an All-American playing career and has been the team’s coach for more than 14 years. He was made school’s director of tennis six years ago, overseeing the men’s and women’s programs.

Zaatini’s men’s teams won 10 consecutive conference championships, a streak the Bucs were looking to extend next month.

Zaatini was the first player from ETSU to compete in the NCAA Championships as an individual. He won four consecutive Southern Conference No. 1 singles championships, the only player to do so. He was ranked as high as No. 4 in the country.

Since Zaatini’s resignation, the team has been coached by his assistant and women’s coach, Ricky Rojas, a former ETSU player.

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