LeBron James shares outrage over coach striking nine-year-old football player
A disturbing video surfaced this week on social media that shows a 9U football team coach striking a nine-year-old player, and footage of the reprehensible conduct has inspired widespread outrage, including from LeBron James.
The incident occurred at the American Youth Football National Championships game in Kissimmee, Fla., per myriad reports. Footage captures a still-unnamed Savannah Gators coach berating the youngster before striking him in the head and then grabbing the boy by the helmet and shaking him.
No room in the game for coaches like this. I hope he is arrested and banned for life. pic.twitter.com/1B0F2cLiqH— Coach Reed (@CoachReed314) December 9, 2020
FS1 television analyst Shannon Sharpe was among the countless individuals on social media left deeply disturbed over the footage who condemned the horrific actions of the coach that legally could be considered assault.
“I’ll whip him even IF* that’s his kid,” Sharpe tweeted. “I won’t let anyone pray on the weak or vulnerable in front of me. Not going to happen.”
James later shared Sharpe’s tweet in his Instagram Story feed.
“Ain’t no way!!”— ClutchPoints (@ClutchPointsApp) December 10, 2020
LeBron reacts to the viral clip of the youth football coach hitting his player on the helmet hard. pic.twitter.com/JfOEL0NhpS
Brad Logan of WJTV 12 in Jackson, Miss., supplemented original reporting on the incident by sharing how the Savannah Gators addressed the situation.
The Savannah Gators have relieved the coach of his duties and apologized publicly to the mother of the player who was punched multiple times, per @detsportsnation https://t.co/r8m2zbR7Ye https://t.co/yU4FT63p8n— Brad Logan (@BradLoganCOTE) December 9, 2020
“Please keep the negative comments off this page please this organization has great coaches we understand what we all saw yesterday was disturbing to us all but let’s not blame everyone for one mans actions,” a since-deleted post from the Gators’ purported Facebook page read, per Complex. “The organization is not at Nationals we have only 2 age groups a National 7U & 9U with only those coaches of those age groups witch [sic] the guy in the video is our 9U head coach he is a good guy that just took it a little to [sic] far on a 9U player we understand and we are aware of what’s going on and will like to apologize to the #BigPeachConference….”
It remains to be seen whether any further action will be taken against the disgraced coach.