Washington State President Kirk Schulz addresses football coach Nick Rolovich's vaccination status at faculty senate meeting

<p><p>Washington State President Kirk Schulz indicated during a faculty senate meeting Thursday that Cougar football coach Nick Rolovich has not received a COVID-19 vaccination.</p></p><p><p>“The major elephant in the room, the thing that’s gotten the Seattle Times all excited, has been one individual who’s in a very prominent position that up until this date has not been vaccinated and has not talked to the media much about where that is,” Schulz said, per PullmanRadio.com.</p></p><p><p>Rolovich declined to comment Wednesday on a Twitter report that claimed the second-year coach had recently gotten the shot in the wake of a state mandate announced in August that requires Washington’s educational employees to either be fully vaccinated by Oct. 18, or be granted a religious or medical exemption.</p></p><p><p>Apparently, Rolovich has missed the deadline for both the Pfizer and Moderna shots. He’ll have to either receive the single-shot Johnson &amp; Johnson vaccine by Oct. 4 or receive an exemption – or risk losing his job. Rolovich has said multiple times that he will “follow the mandate,” but will not elaborate.</p></p><p><p>“I just remind everybody: Regardless of (how much money) the person makes, what position they have, we have to treat people the same,” Schulz said.</p></p><p><p>“Let me make this clear: There is no free pass for anybody,” he continued. “Whether it’s a coach, the president, it doesn’t matter. Everybody that’s a state employee has got to comply, either being vaccinated or filling out and getting an approved exemption.”</p></p><p><p>The state’s highest-paid employee at $3.2 million, Rolovich has been criticized for his lack of transparency on the subject since he first announced in July that he had elected to not receive a vaccine for private reasons.</p></p><p><p>“There’s a lot of: ‘Well, you oughta terminate somebody,’” Schulz said. “Well, am I willing to terminate a faculty member for the same decision? Am I willing to terminate a staff member for the same decision? So, aside from the emotions of that, we’ve had to work really hard to not say a lot. And I understand the angst that’s out there over coach Rolovich’s decision, but at the same time, I’ve tried to remind everybody the community has done a fantastic job of vaccination.”</p></p>