MURFREESBORO – Riverdale football coach Ron Aydelott sustained severe facial injuries after school officials say a 17-year-old male student assaulted him in the coach’s office Tuesday morning.
Aydelott, who has coached the past nine years at Riverdale, was later transported to Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville for surgery, Riverdale Principal Tom Nolan told The Daily News Journal.
“We’re just in total shock,” Nolan said. “I don’t know how how else to explain it. We’re just concerned about Coach Aydelott.
“He will have to undergo some surgery.”
The student has been charged with aggravated assault, according to a news release from the Rutherford County Sheriff’s Office.
School Resource Officer James Coots arrested the student and transported him to the Rutherford County Juvenile Detention Center, the release said. The student is scheduled to appear at 1 p.m. Wednesday in Rutherford County Juvenile Court.
Nolan said the male was not a football player at the school but was wanting to try out for the team.
Nolan wouldn’t say what led to the assault.
“(Aydelott) basically just got attacked,” Nolan said. “The kid just went nuts on him. Coach Aydelott was sitting down at his desk and the guy just kept waling on him.
“He finally stopped. The kid then walked into the office, put his hands behind his back and surrendered.”
Aydelott, who won a state championship at Hillsboro in 2003, was originally transported to Saint Thomas Rutherford Hospital in Murfreesboro before being transferred to Vanderbilt.
Riverdale was scheduled to start its spring football practice on Tuesday. It has been pushed back to next week because of the incident. Still, a small group of football players were on the practice field running pass patterns on their own after school. But all were thinking of their coach.
“We were in fourth period, and two of our football players came to us and asked, ‘Do you know what happened to coach A?'” Riverdale freshman Savion Davis said. “We were like, ‘no.'”
“Then they explained to us what happened. I don’t know what happened. But I was kind of upset.
“I love coach A. He’s a great guy. For someone to hit him in the jaw is upsetting.”