Our High School Senior Kicked Off Football Team

“Police officials identified your son.” When a parent hears a statement like this, the alarms are sounded and the world stops. Thankfully, our son wasn’t in an accident, but he was kicked off his high school football team – his senior year.
We immediately scheduled a meeting to find out the reason for Javan’s (aka Firstborn) dismissal from the team.  During the meeting, we were told #6 was identified as the ring leader and initiated a fight between his team and another area team one Friday evening. 

  Although several other players were present, only three players were kicked off the team. The punishment seemed a little severe, yet we respected the decision. We wanted to immediately defend our son, but when police officials identify your son what is there to defend? Not only was Javan identified by police officials, but we were told school officials and coaches from the other team identified him also. Wow….my husband and I were shocked. Maybe we didn’t know our son as well as we thought. In the meeting, I suggested to my husband that we get Javan tested for drugs. What we were hearing was completely out of character for him. 

 Javan has never been in a fight in his life, so to hear he initiated a fight with a football team was a big pill for us to swallow.  We know Javan gets extremely “in his zone” on game day. He wants to win and his ostentatious athlete mindset is in full force, but is this a crime? After his games, he is upset and doesn’t want to be bothered. With a 1-7 record, he should be use to losing, but he has a winning spirit and doesn’t give up. If I may, the one game the team has won....Javan made the first touchdown.
It’s important to mention the said “fight” never escalated into an actual physical fight, but was just a lot of trash talking between the two teams. Coaches from both teams broke the ruckus up – not one punch was ever thrown. 

One day, while sitting around discussing the incident with Javan, he mentioned not seeing police at the scene. My husband told him he was too busy talking trash to notice the police – we still believed the alarming statement of him being “identified” by police.

I couldn’t sleep or eat and was led to do my own investigation. I contacted the head coach from the other team plus police officials present at the game and no one was identified – NO ONE. The police weren’t even there! No one even knew which team started the trash talking! So, why was our son kicked off the football team?
My husband and I were outraged – downright pissed off.  Were we lied to or was this a big mistake? Surely they wouldn’t lie on our son, but would they lie on police officials? Regardless of any details, the bottom line is – our son was falsely accused. 

 We were also told our son’s behavior was another reason for him being kicked off the team. Okay, make up your mind; what’s the real reason he was kicked off? I attend the football practices quite frequently and the things our son was accused of seems to be the norm of over half the team. We won't even go there! Are we defending our son? You better believe it! What are we supposed to do? Let him be accused of something he didn’t do and pretend it didn’t happen? Sweep it under the rug? We’re sorry, but the wrong child has been accused. We wish we could say Javan was a perfect child, but we can't.  A typical teenager he is, but a trouble maker he is not. We couldn’t care less about Javan getting back on the team; we want only his name cleared from this vicious lie, which doesn’t seem to be important to anyone except us.  

 We refuse to defame anyone’s character by mentioning names. The reason for this blog post is because it’s what I do. I blog about my life and the sometimes crazy events that happen in my family. I was hesitant about sharing this, but I share everything else, so why not share this? My hesitation to blog about this was a red flag in my own character. Now is not the time to be quiet. It happened and those involved will answer to God just as my husband and I have to answer to how we handle this false accusation. We pray for direction, patience, peace, and wisdom. We even pray for the accusers. If we weren’t praying, we would have already called the local television station, newspaper, and a lawyer. Our son is off the team for no sound reason – he was falsely accused – period. Have we forgiven? We had to in order to be sane citizens and parents. We HAD to.   

This is not the end of the story. There is so much deceit going on behind this, our heads are spinning in disbelief. We’ll spare the details – clearing Javan’s name is our main concern. We hope this blog post will open the eyes of parents of athletes and to those athletes who have ever been mistreated or falsely accused, IT’S NOT OKAY. Flag on the play! 

Parents usually immediately defend their child when told of misbehavior, but we were careful not to do this and we made a mistake. Unfortunately, someone else made a mistake and accused the wrong child. Javan, we are sorry we doubted you. We know your character and we will stand by you and behind you to clear your name from this false accusation and all the fallacious statements attached to it.  Stay strong and keep your head up. You have done nothing to warrant being kicked off your football team. Remember, ALL things work together.   

We love you and God has your back!

Months later, I've turned my anger into advocacy. Read how here