Black high school football players were attacked by adults cheering for the opposite team at a game in Detroit. Witnesses said the adults became enraged when the football players took a knee during the national anthem of a semifinal game on Nov 23.
The game was between Almont High and Denby High School. The fans from Almont allegedly attacked the student players from Denby.
Detroit Denby High School football players (white and yellow uniforms) were spit on, cursed at and endured racial slurs after their playoff game with Almont High (the video below is after the game was called off early) pic.twitter.com/k9ZHbTQSOw
— Racist Of The Week (@RacistOTW) November 26, 2019
“Our cameraman is white and was filming near some Almont fans,” Denby coach Deon Godfrey told the Detroit Free Press. “During the national anthem, he overheard them saying: ‘Look at these N-words taking a knee and they don’t even know why they’re doing it,’ and they kept going.”
The Almont fans allegedly called Denby’s white coaches “wiggers.” The comments escalated to violence following the game when the adult fans attacked the students.
“Grown men and women started spitting on our kids as they walked up the ramp. They were throwing food, cups and whatever,” Godfrey said. “They called my student trainer a little monkey and they were saying: ‘Who let them off their leashes?’ “Godfrey said. An Almont parent punched one of the high school football players in the face prompting the Denby teammates to run to the victim’s aid.
@MikeDuggan4 Should Almont High School be allowed to play at Ford Field after what happened with Denby? Do we welcome blatant racism in Detroit?
I am a Detroit teacher and this sends the wrong message to our students.
It says that they don’t matter and they do. #dpscdriseup
— Black Hermione (@torieTorieTORIE) November 27, 2019
NFL national anthem protests date back to the 1960s but have been in the news again after then-San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick took a knee to protest police brutality against black men. In response, he was essentially banned from the NFL and threatened. Donald Trump, whose racism has been well documented, attacked the athlete on the campaign trail countless times.
Detroit Public Schools Community District Superintendent Nikolai Vitti released a statement that said in part: “The school district is deeply disturbed by the actions witnessed this weekend during the Almont-Denby game … it is our understanding that Almont adult spectators were cursing and spitting on our coaches and players after the game while leaving the field.” She added: “The disrespect toward the city, school, and players continued on social media after the game where Almont fans used numerous racist stereotypes.”
Despite the violence, the Oakland County’s Sheriff’s Department didn’t arrest anyone at the game but said they were still investigating the incident. The Almont students were not involved in the racial slurs or the violence, according to media reports.
The Oakland County Sheriff’s Department is reviewing video and interviewing witnesses after a fight broke out at a high school football game. https://t.co/4mghalPQCL
— Local 4 WDIV Detroit (@Local4News) November 24, 2019