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UT-Chattanooga O-Line Coach Fired Over Tweet

Jason Scott

University of Tennessee at Chattanooga assistant football coach Chris Malone was fired after he posted a tweet attacking Georgia voting rights activist and organizer Stacey Abrams. 

Abrams is viewed as having been key to the outcomes of elections in the state of Georgia this cycle, with many crediting her efforts for swinging elections toward democratic candidates. 

Malone, in his now-deleted tweet posted on Tuesday, mocked Abrams, writing “Congratulations to the state GA and Fat Albert @staceyabrams  because you have truly shown America the true works of cheating in an election, again!!!  Enjoy the buffet Big Girl!  You earned it!!! Hope the money was good, still not governor!”

On Wednesday, it was announced that two democratic senate candidates, Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff, had defeated incumbent republican senators Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue in a statewide runoff election held on Tuesday. 

The tweet caused a near instantaneous uproar, catching the attention of national media. Malone deleted his Twitter account, but screen captured images had preserved the tweet. 

By Thursday, Malone had been relieved of his duties.

In a statement, head coach Rusty Wright wrote, “Our football program has a clear set of standards. Those standards include respecting others. It is a message our players hear daily. It is a standard I will not waiver on. What was posted on social media by a member of my staff is unacceptable and not any part of what I stand for or what Chattanooga Football stands for. Life is bigger than football and as leaders of young men, we have to set that example first and foremost. With that said, effective immediately, that individual is no longer a part of my staff.”

Athletic director Mark Wharton weighed in with a statement of his own, writing,”Last night, a totally inappropriate social media post by a member of our football staff was brought to my attention. The entire post was appalling. The sentiments in that post do not represent the values of our football program, our Athletics department or our University. With that said, effective immediately, that individual is no longer a part of the program.” 

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