A high school football player has seen his prep career come to an unceremoniously premature end after a disturbing event in which he punched a 67-year-old assistant football coach after a contentious conclusion to a game in Michigan.
As first reported by the Oakland Press, an unnamed player for West Bloomington (Mich.) High may be brought up on charges of assault in connection with allegations that he knocked an unnamed assistant coach for Stoney Creek (Mich.) High unconscious during a brawl between the two teams following Stoney Brook's 50-28 rout on Friday night.
The brawl itself followed a decision of questionable sportsmanship at the conclusion of the game between the Michigan rivals. Following a final-minute touchdown with just six seconds remaining on the clock, Stoney Creek opted to attempt an onside kick rather than kick deep to an awaiting West Bloomington return man. Furious Stoney Creek players responded, with some overly physical interactions leading to a series of personal fouls against West Bloomington and unruly shoving on the part of both teams.
That's when officials decided they had seen enough, calling off the final six ticks of the clock and officially ending the game. As soon as the premature final whistle had sounded, Stoney Creek coach Brad Zube told his team to head directly into its locker room, skipping a traditional high school postgame handshake line in the process.
That decision proved to be a decisive insult for West Bloomington coaches and players, who ran across the field to accost the Stoney Creek coaching staff and players. An argument quickly escalated into physical interactions, culminating in the disturbing report of the West Bloomington player's alleged assault of an opposing coach. Police were brought to the scene and eventually left with the player in question in handcuffs.
Former University of Michigan and Lions receiver Ron Bellamy, who now serves as the West Bloomington coach, wasted little time in expelling the player involved in the alleged assault from all team activities, though he refused to comment on the incident for reasons of privacy and a forthcoming debriefing with his superiors.
There has been no move to charge the yet-to-be identified player with assault, though that remains an option if the injured Stoney Creek coach decided to pursue them. In the meantime, both programs will try to put the entire unsavory incident behind them and move forward with seasons that rapidly seemed to diverge in opposite directions, as highlighted by the physical incident itself.