TAMPA, Fla. - The Jesuit High School football team will start the playoff’s this week with one less assistant coach after he was fired for hitting a player in the middle of a game.
The incident happened Friday night against rival Tampa Catholic.
In video, that has since gone viral, you can see a player running off the field to the sideline and the part-time assistant coach striking him on the side of his helmet during the game.
Head coach Matt Thompson hasn’t commented, but school president Rev. Richard Hermes, S.J., issued the following statement:
"I am writing to make you aware of an incident that occurred this past Friday night during the Jesuit home football game. Between plays on the field, one of our part-time assistant coaches struck a Jesuit player on the helmet as the player was coming off the field and onto the sideline. This behavior contradicts what the school stands for and is completely contrary to the expectation we have for coaches, moderators, and faculty members, who are to be role models for our students and mentors in their development as young men. We have reached out to the student, who was not injured in the incident, and to his family. We have met with the coach and informed him that he will no longer be coaching Jesuit football or assisting the school in any other capacity. The mission of Jesuit is to provide a Christian formation and education for our students. This requires that we maintain an environment for them that is safe, supportive, and conducive to their well-being and growth. This standard applies to all activities, inside and outside the classroom. We are reviewing our internal procedures and staff training to ensure that this standard is upheld by all Jesuit personnel, full-time and part-time. Thank you for your prayers and encouragement in helping us to better fulfill our mission."