The head football coach at an Ohio high school was fired, alongside six other coaches, after they reportedly used pork to penalize one of their players.
According to reports, the 17-year-old player missed a voluntary workout, so his coaches made him eat pork as a punishment — allegedly. As a Hebrew Israelite, eating pork goes against the player’s religion.
From ESPN: “The Canton City Board of Education voted unanimously Thursday to not renew the coaching contracts of Canton McKinley head football coach Marcus Wattley, two of his assistants and an assistant baseball coach, The Canton Repository reported. With the same vote, the board also deemed three other assistant football coaches as ineligible for future coaching positions.”
After the player reported the alleged May 24 incident, the coaches were suspended and have now been fired following an investigation that included video footage as proof.
“District superintendent Jeff Talbert said surveillance video gave administrators the information they needed to warrant their recommendations to the board. However, he declined to provide details of what happened and said the video would not be publicly released due to federal student privacy regulations,” ESPN states.
The fired coaches maintain the allegations have been exaggerated and that the player had a choice in what he ate. Read their full side of the story here. The player and his family are reportedly planning to sue the school district.