Fox Sports’ Mike Pereira wants high school football team suspended for vicious hit on official
If Fox Sports NFL rules analyst Mike Pereira had it his way, a high school football team in Texas would forfeit its season for the conduct of two of its players in a game Friday.
In the video, the back judge official was watching the play when one player from John Jay High School in San Antonio hits him from behind and another player spears him with his helmet. The video also shows the play the official was watching was nowhere near him.
On Monday, the school district announced that both players have been suspended from the team and school indefinitely pending the outcome of an investigation and a due process hearing.
However, that’s not enough for Pereira, who spent 14 years officiating college football games and two years officiating NFL games before being promoted to supervisor of NFL officiating and later vice president of officiating. He wants criminal charges to be brought up and called for the remainder John Jay’s season to be forfeited.
“The school district is investigating. So is the athletics’ association. And they have suspended the two players involved. That’s not enough,” Pereira told Fox Sports. “Criminal charges need to come, without question. … The whole team, to me, should be suspended. End of the season for Jay High School.”
Before the referee was hit, two Jay players had been ejected on separate plays.
Pascual Gonzalez, a spokesman for the Northside Independent School District, told The Associated Press earlier Sunday that the district would hear from game officials, coaches and students during an upcoming due process hearing.
“It is not the good sportsmanlike behavior that we teach students,” he said.
The incident occurred with approximately a minute left in Friday’s game, according to Marble Falls coach Matt Green.
Marble Falls was trying to run out the clock and called for a handoff toward the left side of the line of scrimmage.
The penalties stemming from the incident gave Marble Falls a first down. John Jay lost 15-9.
Marble Falls coach Matt Green said John Jay coach Gary Gutierrez apologized after the game.
“I’ve coached 14 years and I’ve never seen anything like it,” Green told the San Antonio Express-News.
The referee was “very upset” and “wanting to press charges,” Austin Football Officials Association secretary Wayne Elliott told the AP.
Elliott said he was seeking guidance from the state officials association, adding, “the first thing we want is that those two kids to never play football again.”
He declined to release the referee’s name.
The University Interscholastic League, which governs primary and high school sports, is working with the school district and officials on the investigation, according to spokeswoman Kate Hector.
The Associated Press contributed to this story