Texas football coach who ordered hit out of a job

ROUND ROCK, Texas (AP) — The latest developments on two Texas high school football players who deliberately hit a referee during a game: (all times local)

6 p.m.

An attorney for a Texas high school football coach whose players struck a referee in retaliation for alleged racial insults says his client is unfairly taking all the blame.

Mack Breed is no longer an assistant coach at John Jay High in San Antonio. His attorney said Thursday that Breed has resigned and is disputing accusations that players were ordered to hit referee Robert Watts.

Attorney James Reeves says Breed "never intended to hit or hurt" Watts. He says others have yet to accept responsibility for their roles in the Sept. 4 game but didn't single anyone out.

Breed's former bosses told a state governing board they believe the assistant coach instructed players to hit Watts, who has denied making racially charged comments.


12:45 p.m.

A Texas high school football head coach whose players deliberately hit and knocked down a referee during a game is facing possible probation from coaching.

Members of Texas' governing board of high school sports told John Jay head coach Gary Gutierrez on Thursday they might consider that option against him. But the board adjourned a fact-finding hearing without taking action.

School officials say assistant coach Mack Breed has resigned. Administrators say Breed told them he instructed players to retaliate against a referee for making a racial slur.

Referee Robert Watts has denied those allegations. He did not attend the hearing.

The University Interscholastic League says it hopes to finally end the investigation in October.


12 p.m.

The referee who was deliberately hit by two Texas high school football players says he didn't call the players a profane racial slur.

An attorney for referee Robert Watts also told a state governing board Thursday that his client didn't tell John Jay High School players earlier this month to "speak English, this is America."

Watts didn't attend the fact-finding hearing in Austin. Jay Downs, his attorney, handed the board copies of family photos that show Watts at his wedding with his best man, who is black, and another of Watts' grandmother, who is from Mexico.

Watts said in a written statement he has post-concussion syndrome. He said one John Jay player told him, "You're in the way" and laughed.


This story has been corrected to delete reference to the player who said "You're in the way" hitting the referee.


11:20 a.m.

A Texas school administrator says an assistant football coach who allegedly ordered players to strike a referee during a game no longer works for the district.

The principal and head football coach at John Jay High School told state officials Thursday they believe assistant Mack Breed told players to retaliate against an official in the closing minutes of a game earlier this month.

John Jay players told their coaches earlier in the game that referees had been directing racial slurs at them.

The referee who was struck by the players has denied those allegations.

Brian Woods, the school superintendent, didn't specify at a state hearing in Austin whether the assistant coach had been fired or resigned. The players who struck the referee have been suspended to an alternative school.