Following an incident in Texas earlier this month, in which two high school football players leveled a referee, a Tennessee high school football player has been suspended for allegedly doing the same thing.
Glencliff High School’s Malcom Easley, the son of the team’s head coach, collided with referee Kyle Gill during the second quarter of a game last Friday. Gill believes he was hit on purpose.
Easley was flagged and his team was penalized 15 yards.
“I had spoken to the player on the play before and he told me that I was in his way,” Gill said to the Gallatin News.
Footage of the play before shows Easley moving behind Gill toward a running play. Easley appears to touch Gill on the waist as the play ends.
Gill’s refereeing position on the play appears to impede Easley’s path, but Gill says a player should be able to maneuver around a referee regardless of the ref’s position.
“I asked him how long he’d been playing football and he had to realize that the referees are part of the field. I told him that he should have to avoid me and not the other way around,” Gill said.
A review of the incident by the Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association found no malicious intent or targeting on Easley’s part. Following the review, no further punishment was handed down.
Easley was suspended for one game by his school.