Councils, coaches, players, and more are attempting to make football a sport that is still big on hits but safe for all those involved. It doesn’t help when an incident like the one that happened on Friday night takes place. Two players from a high school team in Texas were caught on video targeting and viciously hitting a referee during a game.
As reported by the Sporting News, the game official appeared to be fully targeted before being hit by two players in a game between Marble Falls and John Jay High School.
The two players, who have not had their names released yet, were from John Jay High School. One is the defensive back, and he can clearly be seen in the video below targeting and aiming directly at the back of the referee.
After the referee is blindsided and falls to the ground, another defensive back comes in from the opposite side and spears the official.
Of course, it isn’t entirely known if the players purposely targeted the official, but it certainly appears that way from the video. The official is far enough back from the play, and the two players go after him while not getting involved in the play itself either.
Marble Falls head coach Matt Green was shocked by what he saw on the field on Friday night.
“I’ve coached 14 years and I’ve never seen anything like it.”
Deadspin is reporting that the two players were targeting the referee “because of a bad call,” but there isn’t much information about the situation available as of this writing.
Both players were ejected from the game, which ended in a 15-9 John Jay loss to Marble Falls. The incident happened late in the game, and school district athletic director Stain Laing called the video “very disturbing.”
My San Antonio has reported that the district is indeed investigating the sequence of events leading up to the play. The University Interscholastic League is aware of what has happened, and they are also looking into it.
Situations like this are made even more disturbing considering the dangers that can come from the game of football. In Franklin Parish, Louisiana, on Friday night, a sophomore player died after suffering a broken neck on the field.
Apparently, the investigation is looking into if the players intentionally targeted and hit the official, and whether coaches knew about it or not. The two Texas high school football players who targeted the referee could end up facing possible lifetime suspension from high school sports or even face charges.
[Image via Getty Images – Streeter Lecka]