Iowa State AD ejected from high school gym after comment to referee

Cameron Smith
Prep Rally

College athletic directors are employed to adjudge whether some of the highest-paid executives in American sports -- college coaches -- are exhibiting good judgment. Imagine the shock then when one of those ADs shows some old fashioned poor judgment of his own at a high school sporting event.

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As covered in great detail by the Des Moines Register, Des Moines TV network KCCI and a handful of other Iowa outlets, Iowa State athletic director Jamie Pollard was ejected from a high school basketball game between Colfax-Mingo (Ia.) High and Gilbert (Ia.) High. The AD was reportedly ejected after making an objectionable comment to one of the game referees. He was at the game because his son is a member of the Gilbert High basketball team.

"The official went over to the scorers bench, at that point Mr. Pollard just told the official that he thought it was a bad call," Marty Lucas, superintendent at the Colfax-Mingo School District, told KCCI.

"The official took it as maybe being called out in front of the crowd, but again, everyone I talked to said there was nothing inappropriate. There was no foul language, not yelling -- nothing like that. … The principal went up to Mr. Pollard, asked him to leave. Mr. Pollard left.”

Whether there was foul language or not, what was a collegiate AD doing calling out a high school referee? Surely few people would know better just how hard it is to be a referee than an AD, who has to deal with his own coaches interactions with them.

To Pollard’s credit, the collegiate administrator quickly apologized for his actions, all while giving credit to one of his high school counterparts.

“I’m sorry I said anything I shouldn’t have,” Pollard told the Register. “I’m only to blame but myself.

“I really appreciate the professionalism of [Colfax-Mingo AD] Todd Jones. Todd has clarified what really happened,” Pollard said Thursday. “I have aploolgized for putting Todd in that position, and I really respect the fact that he has clarified what really happened.”

Now that the incident has passed, Colfax-Mingo officials have been quick to say that the Iowa State AD would be welcome back onto their facilities whenever he would like. Still, he may think twice before showing back up on the high school campus after his first run in there.

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