UIL: No Suspension For Jay Football Team After Ref Is Pummeled
The University Interscholastic League (UIL) says it will not suspend San Antonio's John Jay High School from playing in future football games this season.
Members of the UIL executive committee made that announcement Wednesday morning after a public meeting with representatives from the Northside Independent School District, the Marble Falls School District, and members of the Texas Association of Sports Officials.
The meeting in Round Rock followed an incident last week at a football game held at Marble Falls High School. Two John Jay High School players were captured on video as one knocked down a referee and the other followed by striking the referee with his helmet.UIL Chairman Mike Motheral says his group is convinced NorthsideISD is doing everything possible to ensure that an incident like this does not occur again in the future.
“They have suspended the two kiddos that were involved in this incident, so they will no longer be a factor. There’s no doubt that Northside ISD will do as thorough as job as could possibly be imagined in this Friday night’s ball game,” Motheral said.
But some UIL committee members feel more should be done, adding that coaches had lost control of more than just two players on the field during last Friday's game, pointing to a number of delayed-hits, and fights that happened prior to the incident with referee Robert Watts.
One thing UIL officials agree on is that the hits to Watts were intentional and potentially premeditated. The online video of two John Jay High players hitting Watts has gathered more than nine million views on YouTube.
John Jay High School reported that it is examining whether Assistant Coach Mack Breed had said something to players that led to the hits, and whether that was related to players reporting that the referee had used racial slurs while officiating the game in Marble Falls. Northside Superintendent Brian Woods said he plans to file a complaint with the Texas Association of Sports Officials.
“We feel like we owe it to the young men who have alleged racial comments were made on the field to file a complaint such that TASO has the information and they can launch their own independent investigation,” Woods said.
TASO reported that Watts was a fill-in referee and not a regular member of the team asked by both schools to officiate the game.
A UIL special committee will meet again on September 23 to go over the school’s findings, and to be updated on allegations that Watts may have made racially insensitive comments. The UIL will then decide if John Jay High School should face any type of punitive action.