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The Texas State athletic department launched an investigation on Friday into the disturbing allegations former point guard Jaylen Shead made against head coach Danny Kaspar this week, according to the Austin American-Statesman.
Shead, who played for the Bobcats for two seasons before transferring out, accused Kaspar of consistently making racist and abusive statements to both him and his teammates in a Twitter post on Thursday — something he said largely led him to leave the program.
“I personally find these allegations deeply troubling,” athletic director Larry Teis said in a statement, via the American-Statesman. “I, and the entire department of athletics staff, take the concerns expressed by our former student-athletes very seriously.”
Shead’s disturbing allegations
Shead detailed several incidents in his post, including one where Kaspar told him and a group of players that, “If y’all say the N-word that means I can say it.” He also allegedly told the team that “if a brown man with a turban and an AK-47 walked in, I bet y’all would run as fast as you could” when they were doing a drill, threatened to have a European player deported with the help of President Donald Trump-supporting boosters and alumni if he kept “messing up,” and once said that Shead was “running like the cops are behind him” when he was doing suicides in practice, among other things.
Shead also claimed that their team handbook prohibited “certain items that only the black players wore such as durags and earrings.”
Shead transferred to Texas State after his first two seasons at Cal Poly, and had to sit out his first year per NCAA transfer rules. He then started every game in his junior season for the Bobcats, averaging nearly eight points and five assists in more than 28 minutes per game. He transferred to Washington State last year to finish out his career.
“For me, the experience was shocking,” Shead wrote, in part. “I could overlook the way coach Kaspar treated players in most regards. I could overlook the lies he fed us to get us there and to keep us there. I could overlook the way he disregarded the rules and our health. But I could not turn away from the many racially insensitive things that were said to me and other teammates.
“I had never seen someone abuse their power in such a way before, especially someone who claimed he, ‘cared about us.’ These things happened so much on a daily [basis], we became numb as it was normal.”
Kaspar has been at Texas State since 2013, and has compiled a 119-109 overall record in his seven seasons there. The 65-year-old joined the Bobcats after a 13-year stint at Stephen F. Austin.
Per the American-Statesman, a lawsuit in 2013 alleged that Kaspar once scolded a former player for “taking advantage of a slow white boy” in practice and that he took the player’s scholarship away and gave it to a white player because the white player “is a slow white boy and I’m not going to fault him for that.”
Several of Shead’s former teammates have backed up his claims, too, including former starting forward Alex Peacock — who told the American-Statesman he “heard directly” the things that Shead alleged.
Both Peacock and Shead, however, said they don’t think that Kaspar is racist.
“I don’t think there was really any malice behind it,” Peacock said, via the American-Statesman. “They are just really insensitive comments that I don’t think he knows are really insensitive. I don’t think he should be fired if he can change his ways.”
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