High school football coach fired after using racial slur in pre-game chant

CatLane/iStock(NEW ORLEANS) — A Louisiana high school fired its head football coach on Tuesday after video showed him leading players in a locker room chant that included the n-word.

Officials at St. Augustine High School in New Orleans terminated head football coach Nathaniel Jones on Tuesday after social media video appeared to show him using the racial slur in a rowdy call-and-response style chant before a game, according to a statement.

The chant appeared to be a team tradition under Jones, who is black, according to video uploaded to YouTube from prior games this year.

St. Augustine High, an all-male private school with a predominantly black student body, said the video came to its attention over the weekend, but officials did not reveal who flagged it.

“We are shocked and embarrassed that such blatantly offensive language would be used at any school event and directed toward our student-athletes and opponents,” the school said in a statement over the weekend when it first addressed the incident publicly. “The behavior displayed in the video is indefensible and runs counter to our core values and our commitment to serving young men and their families.”

“Not only are these actions hurtful to our community, but they also undermine the work of our founders, the Josephites, who are standard-bearers for equality and civil rights,” it added.

The school revealed that it had launched an investigation into the incident on Sunday. It named assistant football coach Kenneth Dorsey as Jones’ interim replacement.

St. Augustine High School President and CEO Kenneth St. Charles said the decision to replace Jones came after carefully reviewing the school’s football program.

“Following a review of our football program, we have decided to go in a new direction,” St. Charles said in a statement Tuesday. “We thank Coach Jones for his contributions and service to St. Augustine and our football team. ”

Copyright © 2019, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.