ASU’s Evan Fields receives hateful DM; Utah AD issues response
Utah athletic director Mark Harlan issued a statement on Thursday after it was revealed that Arizona State defensive back Evan Fields received a hateful direct message on Twitter.
A woman who appears to be Fields’ mother, Evonnda Fields, tweeted screenshots on Thursday morning of the message, which included expletives and told Fields to “die for targeting Zach Moss (sic).” It also called Fields worthless. You can find that tweet here (warning: explicit language).
Fields was ejected from Saturday’s road loss against Utah for targeting on a play in which Utah running back Zack Moss carried for 14 yards.
The Twitter user who sent the messages has since deleted the account, which had the username @ajpro82. But the tweet from Fields’ mother ties the since-deleted account’s identity to A.J. Proctor, whose business account @proctordental has also been deleted.
“I’m offended by a fan who DM my Son a horrible Hate message,” Evonnda Fields wrote. “We all get a lil emotional over our fav teams & players but Student Athletes r still kids in our adult eyes and they have parents that [love] them just as U [love] your 2 sons Dr. A.J. Proctor@proctordental. LEAVEMINEALONE (sic).”
Fields’ tweet included screenshots of Proctor’s professional Twitter, his website and a portrait of what appears to be Proctor’s wife and children.
The timestamp for the direct message to Evan Fields was listed as Sunday at 1:49 p.m, a day after the game.
“We strongly condemn the behavior of the individual who directed such hatred toward an Arizona State student-athlete,” Harlan’s post said. “There is no place for such behavior from anybody who represents Utah Athletics directly or indirectly. On behalf of all Utes, I want to offer my apologies to Evan, his family, athletic director Ray Anderson, head coach Herm Edwards and the Arizona State football program.
“We have already begun to look into the identity of the individual to immediately address this behavior. We encourage all who support the Utes to be respectful and civil in demonstrating their support; Utah Athletics will not tolerate behavior that expresses such hatred.”