Iowa father tries to forcibly remove son from game for poor grades

Cameron Smith
Prep Rally

An unruly father in Iowa City was arrested and banned from all Iowa City (Iowa) High property after he ran onto a soccer field and attempted to remove his own son from the game for alleged poor grades.

Benjamin I.H. Doyle — Iowa City Police
Benjamin I.H. Doyle — Iowa City Police

As reported by the Iowa City Press-Citizen -- and brought to Prep Rally's attention by Larry Brown Sports -- a man named Benjamin I.H. Doyle was charged with a trespass violation after he ran onto the soccer field at Longfellow Elementary School and attempted to forcibly remove his son from the ongoing City High soccer game.

Police officers on the scene rapidly removed Doyle from the field and questioned him about the incident. When asked why he ran onto the field, Doyle — who is listed as a database administrator for the University of Iowa's Hospital Information Systems — said that his son's grades were too poor for him to be allowed to play soccer.

That account was countered by the player's mother and City High officials, both of whom verified that the player was indeed eligible to compete for the City High team.

After further discussion with officers, Doyle apparently admitted that he had let his temper "get the best of him," and recognized that he was not allowed to run onto the field of play.

Because the trespass charge against him qualifies as a simple misdemeanor, it is unlikely that Doyle will face any further sanctions beyond his ban from City High property. Still, his incident serves as a disturbing reminder of what can happen when parents take their children's academic or athletic pursuits far too personally, even if the father's commitment to ensuring his son is achieving in the classroom would be admirable in a more rational dose.

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