West Virginia University football defensive coordinator Vic Koenning has been placed on administrative leave, the school announced on Tuesday.
His leave of absence is following allegations made by Mountaineer safety Kerry Martin Jr. on Twitter.
I've been contemplating about posting but we need a change in our program. pic.twitter.com/40hZYXjxib— Kerry "KJ" Martin Jr.🌹 (@KMartinJr11) June 23, 2020
In the tweet, Martin alleged Koenning made inappropriate comments about current protests against police brutality and systemic racism, supported President Trump's desire to build a wall to "keep Hispanics out of the country," called him a slur used for a mentally disabled person, and challenged his religious beliefs publically and privately.
"We need a change in our program," Martin said. "Coach Vic is not a bad person and he does mean well in many [different] aspects but his heinous actions toward us over rules the good things he has done and many of us are uncomfortable being around him."
After being placed on administrative leave, West Virginia defensive coordinator Vic Koenning has issued an apology.
"I respect Kerry Martin's right to share that some of my words and actions impacted him. I care deeply for KJ and, when given the opportunity to speak to him directly, am optimistic we can find common ground. In the interim, I want to offer my sincere apology to both KJ and the entire WVU family," Koenning said.
"I never intended anything I said or did to offend or be insensitive. But KJ's tweet reminded me that sometimes intent is not always clearly communicated. I've devoted the last 30-plus years of my life to serving young men through coaching. I've always tried to see things from the perspective of others. I'm not perfect - but I'm also not the person many on social media have painted me to be. I'm still learning every day and this is an opportunity to listen, learn and improve."
Koenning was brought to WVU in 2019 when head coach Neal Brown was hired as the Mountaineers' head coach.
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