Utah has suspended defensive coordinator Morgan Scalley and launched an external investigation concerning a 2013 text message he sent that included a racial slur, Utes athletics director Mark Harlan announced Friday on social media.

Harlan said he was made aware of the text message Wednesday night and that he had spoken to Scalley, who "is very contrite and acknowledged that the text was sent and that it did include a derogatory and painful word."

"In 2013 I made a terrible mistake," Scalley said in a statement released by the school. "I used a racial slur in a text message. This language is offensive and hurtful to not only the African-American community, but to all. Immediately after sending it, I apologized to the recipient and his family. I am also heartbroken over the potential breach of trust with my fellow coaches, and with the young men in our program, both past and present."

Harlan said he consulted with Utah president Ruth Watkins and that an outside law firm would conduct a review to "seek further details and determine whether this was an isolated incident."