A Naples, Florida, head football coach is stepping down from his position after he was captured using explicit language and verbally assaulting one of his players.
Derek Jenks, also a founder of SWFL Preparatory and Technical Institute, revealed that he is “suspending” himself until further notice, USA Today reported.
“I hold my players in high accountability for the way they act, and I need to be held to the same standards,” Jenks, 45, said in a video published on the school’s Facebook page on Friday, Sept. 8. “And at the moment I feel like I let my team down and my coaches down and our program down for the actions that I displayed.”
He continued, “I’m going to do what I can to seek mentorship for myself to be able to become a better coach and mentor to my players.”
His public statement comes in response to a video shared by the outlet that shows the coach yelling and cursing at player Alvin Day — which received heavy criticism online. At one moment, Jenks called Day a “b**ch” and told him to square up with him.
“Get the f**k up and do something,” Jenks yelled. “You want to be a gangster? Let’s do some gangster sh*t. Let’s go. Get up.”
Jenks was sitting beside Day in the announcement. In the video, the player said he forgives his coach’s actions and appreciates him taking accountability. However, according to the Naples Daily News, his mother called the incident “heartbreaking” and that the family is considering “all options at this moment.”
“Everyone who knows my child knows he is no gangster, knows he is no drug dealer, knows he loves the Lord, and comes from a home where he was taught the difference between right and wrong,” Quonekuia Day wrote. “There is no moment where this is acceptable.”
People on social media argued that Jenks should be terminated and condemned that Day was included in Jenks’ apology video.
According to its website, SWFL Preparatory and Technical Institute, home of the Seahawks, is a program that offers “student-athletes the opportunity to play football while attending a credit recovery program or technical college.”