Mater Dei High School head coach Bruce Rollinson stood near a statue of the Virgin Mary in the school’s grotto, a short walk from the football field, on Thursday morning.
Four Monarch players led parents, alumni and fans in a garland at the end of the morning, both prayerful and profane, part football practice, about the values of top-ranked football at the national level. Talking part pep rally event and a school whose motto is “Hope, Glory, Love”.
The Mater dei CIF Southern Section Division I championship game was a day away from the showdown with Cerveite and a shot at a third national title in five years. But a game that was sold out in a matter of hours this week will be played against a backdrop of growing calls for the dismissals of Rollinson and Mater Dei principal Francis Clare, after an Orange County Register report reported that the coach and school were violent. The handling was explained in detail. Year.
A current Mater Dei player punched a teammate, 50 pounds lighter than him, in the face three times during a smoky ritual called Bodies on February 4, while other Monarch players shouted racial adjectives at the younger player, receiving controversy. According to the two videos of by Register.
The register is not identifying players because of their age.
According to medical records, the younger athlete, Player 1, suffered a head injury, a broken nose and a wound above each eye. According to the police report, the Santa Ana Police Department recommended prosecuting the big player, Player 2, for felony charges. The Orange County District Attorney’s office does not intend to file charges in the case.
The player’s family filed suit against Mater Dei High School and the Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange in Orange County Superior Court on Tuesday, November 23.
According to court filings, the day after the dispute, Rawlinson told the injured player’s father, “If I had a hundred dollars every time I saw these kids’ bodies or slaps, I would be a millionaire.”
But Rollinson said during an April interview with an investigator from the Santa Ana Police Department that the interview “was the first time he’d heard of any of his players participating in a ‘bodies’ game where the participants were then hitting each other.” until someone comes out,” according to a police report.
Now standing in front of a statue of Mary, who he and his team had described as the “Holy Mother of Victory” moments earlier, Rawlinson was asked whether the February 4 video would reveal the body and functions. In accordance with the values of Mater Dei?
At first, Rollinson looked straight ahead, remaining silent.
“I’m not going to comment at this time,” he said at the end. “So we’re going to be standing here forever.”
Are you worried about your job? Rollinson was asked.
He said, ‘I have no comment. “There’s an investigation.”
Did he lie to the police?
“No comment,” Rollinson said. “I have, it’s under investigation.”
Earlier in the week, Rollinson called on former Mater Dei players on social media to attend Thursday morning practice.
“You understand the importance of this day to our team and you know how important brotherhood is to me. I need you there No excuse. Just be there,” Rollinson was quoted on the Mater Dei football program’s Twitter page.
One by one, about 100 former players went to the assembled current team and knelt after Thursday’s practice, hugged Rollinson, introduced himself, the year he graduated and wished the team all the best against Servite, Often pronounced with slang.
Rollinson – with players, current and former, parents, young children wearing red Mater Dei jerseys and T-shirts – talked about the Monarchs family and its traditions.
But two videos of the February 4 feud, police reports, surgery and other medical records, mater dei records, interviews and court filings obtained by the Register raise questions about the family’s perceived image of the Monarchs program and the values of the largest coeducational Roman Catholic. Huh. High School West of the Mississippi River
During a conversation with Player 1’s father, Rollinson told parents he was “obligated” to discipline the other player because he said his father was one of the team’s volunteer coaches, according to a court filing. According to.
Player 1’s family lawsuit alleges negligence, negligence, negligence in warning, training or educating, willfully inflicting emotional distress, in violation of the California Penal Code.
Mater Dei trainer Kevin Anderson, after noticing Player 1’s injuries, “spoke with Mater Dei’s administrative staff, who told him not to call paramedics and to delay contacting (Player 1’s) parents” ,” according to a court filing. According to a court filing, Anderson did not immediately treat Player 1, given the severity of Player 1’s injuries, and continued to tape other players’ ankles for practice.
According to police reports, Mater Dei officials initially refused to cooperate with investigators from the Santa Ana Police Department. Rollinson and Kevin Kiernan, the school’s athletic director, eventually agreed to be interviewed by a Santa Ana Police Department investigator with the Mater Dei assistant principal for student services attending on April 21, more than two months after the dispute and when Santa Ana According to the PD police report, first sought information from the school.
During his interview with the Santa Ana PD, Rollinson said, “We don’t care about our schedule. Never will, never will. I’ve been chief for 32 years. To be honest, I’ve been hedging words since 1989. Never heard of it being used.”
In a letter to Mater Dei parents and students Wednesday, school president Walter Jenkins asked for “your trust and confidence as we navigate the process ahead, and kindly request that you protect the privacy of all involved.” And respect dignity.”
Dozens of former Mater Dei players literally stood behind Rollinson on a sunny Thursday morning.
“We’re excited,” Rollinson told the parents, players and fans around him on the field, before starting the prayer and then walking into the grotto with the group for more prayers. “We had a good practice. We’re ready. We know what we need to do. Our focus isn’t just on Servite. Our focus is on winning the championship last night. That’s the only thing we care about and we Will take care of business and we will raise that plaque tomorrow night.
“Okay, let’s bow our heads.”