The head football coach at a Long Island high school has been removed from his post after he was accused of attacking an opposing football player, allegedly grabbing him, “in the neck area and started shaking him back and forth.”
The incident allegedly unfolded during a preseason scrimmage between Islip (N.Y.) High School and Shoreham-Wading River (N.Y.) High School. At the end of a tense scrimmage a brief skirmish broke out, with players from both sides fighting back and forth. One of those players, Islip offensive guard and defensive end Richie Valenzuela, was then allegedly attacked by Shoreham-Wading River coach Aden Smith.
In the aftermath of that account, Smith was removed from his coaching position during his second season at the helm.
“The district is currently investigating an incident involving the varsity football team’s head coach,” Shoreham-Wading River Schools Superintendent Gerard Poole’s said in a statement. “The incident took place during a scrimmage against Islip on Aug. 30, 2019. While this investigation is underway, the head coach has been removed and the current assistant coaches will be leading the team.”
While the removal of Smith may not eliminate bad memories for Valenzuela, it does accomplish what the family aimed to do, according to Adele Valenzuela, the alleged victim’s mother.
“We don’t want this to happen again to anyone by this coach,” Adele Valenzuela told Newsday. “I would feel bad if this happened to another player.
“I’ve never seen a coach, a grown man, do something like this. He shouldn’t be coaching.”