A Sacramento high school football team is heading into the postseason without 12 players after a fight in last Friday night’s game.
As Sacramento’s KOVR and other outlets report, Sacramento’s Grant Union High School was facing host Whitney High School (Rocklin, Calif.) when an all-out brawl broke out after two players began fighting following a point after touchdown during the third quarter.
The game was stopped at that point, with Grant winning 39-28.
Grant has a playoff game this Friday against Thomas Downey (Modesto, Calif.), but will be without a number of its players who are serving suspensions.
The California Interscholastic Federation reviewed video footage and found athletes from both schools were involved. Whitney High’s season ended with the brawl. The Wildcats finished 0-10, and without any players disciplined by CIF.
“I feel that it wasn’t the right call,” Grant High assistant football couch Deanthone Ferguson told KCRA. “I feel that we’re Grant. We have a persona on us. We have a bad rep. That we’re thugs. We’re this. We’re that. None of these kids are thugs.”
Per KOVR, parents are speaking out after the brawl.
“He’s hurt. He’s more hurt than anything because this is a dream of his. It has been snatched from him,” Kenneth Kinsey, whose son plays for Grant, told KOVR.
As KOVR reports, Kinsey is devastated because his son has been disqualified after leaving the bench during the brawl.
“He has a right to play,” Kinsey said. “He did not fight. He didn’t hurt anyone. He went out there to prevent players from fighting. To break it up.”
The video lasted just seconds, but in that time you can see a Whitney coach take off a Grant player’s helmet, followed by the player slamming another Whitney coach to the ground.
Ferguson told KCRA he believes his players would not have gone onto the field if Whitney’s coaches didn’t run out there first.
“They’re protecting their player, they’re protecting their brothers — and that’s all it was,” he said.
Per KCRA, Ferguson is now training some junior varsity football players to fill benched starters’ spots for the playoff game vs. Downey.
“What can we do? We can’t cry over spilled milk,” Ferguson said. “We have to get these kids prepared that’s practicing with us right now for Friday.”