Youth football team banned after parent body-slams referee in viral video
An embarrassing display of violence from a parent got an entire youth football team from Albuquerque banned from the league. The video of the incident has sparked outrage nationwide.
A game between the Rio Grande and Atrisco Heritage team was going well until a brawl over a flag on a play caused one of the players to refute the referee’s decision and a discussion ensued. According to witnesses, the player pushed the referee, and he pushed back, and that’s when a dad that was on the field lost his cool.
VIRAL VIDEO: Parent body slams referee during youth football game https://t.co/VrarFV4PLs— KRON4 News (@kron4news) September 26, 2018
In what seems like a heated discussion between several players, who are in majority 13-year-old, parents and the official, an outraged father decided to body slam the referee, causing a major panic to arise in the football field. While the video cuts off just after the body slam, the game was canceled soon after and the teams banned from the Young America Football League.
“Unfortunately some people get too excited for these events, and they decide to go on to the field and take matters into their own hands," said Officer Simon Drobik to CBS.
The YAFL has strict rules and guidelines for parents, where they pledge to control their emotions on a game, precisely to avoid that kind of incidents. According to KRQE News 13, when someone from the Rio Grande violated the policies, he got the entire team banned for the current season.
For the Albuquerque police is not uncommon to attend calls of similar cases, as Drobik said. “I think nationwide you’re seeing this behavior, not just Albuquerque.” The New Mexico Activities Association, which is not in charge of the YAFL, sais these acts of violence scare the referees away.
“It's disappointing to see something like that occur at a youth sporting event, and it's one of those things and other sportsmanship issues that are causing the shortage of officials," said Dusty Young, a representative of the association.
Lucy Torres, one of the mothers that were present on the brawl, said:
“I think this would be scary for some of the kids; they wouldn't want to play anymore. I think that’s horrible...That’s uncalled for."
The Bernalillo County Sheriff's Office attended the fight, but no arrests were made.