Beaumont (Cailf.) High School head football coach Will Martin is under investigation after a cellphone video recorded him punching a player in the stomach.
In the video, the unidentified player stands against the wall with his hands above his head while Martin stands away from him, striking him in the gut in a ritual act of punishment. One parent, quoting their football-playing son, told NBC Los Angeles that, “If you do anything to upset the coach, he will make you put your hands above your head, close your eyes and punch you in the gut.” The player estimated a similar punishment has been extracted upon “dozens” of players.
However, some parents and players are defending Martin’s actions. A few even spoke on camera.
The Beaumont school district obtained the video on Oct. 3 and turned it over to local authorities. Martin has been placed on administrative leave and could face criminal charges. Martin previously interned for the Jacksonville Jaguars and San Diego Chargers and coached a number of defensive positions for New Mexico State.
FootballScoop obtained the full video of the incident, which can be seen below.
— FootballScoop Staff (@FootballScoop) October 16, 2017