The West Virginia Mountaineers football program and defensive coordinator Vic Koenning came under the national microscope Tuesday morning. Defensive back Kerry Martin Jr. wrote a lengthy statement sharing allegations of racism and mistreatment by Koenning. Now, the university has responded.
Vic Koenning placed on administrative leave by West Virginia
Late Tuesday afternoon, West Virginia announced that Koenning has been placed on administrative leave effective immediately. It also announced it will conduct a thorough investigation into Martin’s claims, per Max Olson of The Athletic.
Athletic director Shane Lyons also thanked Martin for “having the courage to bring his concerns to light.”
Koenning accused of using slurs, sharing racist opinions and pushing religion
Here’s a look at the tweet that started it all.
Martin alleges that Koenning has antagonized at least one player regarding religion, and he detailed his own experiences with Koenning pushing the Bible on him despite knowing he shares a different religious belief.
Additionally, Martin detailed an instance where he says Koenning called him “retarded.”
“In the month of June, 3 weeks after we had reported back to campus for summer workouts, I had my first incident with him after a mistake I made on the field that he called me retarded for doing the wrong technique. I have family members that are actually mentally ill and for him to say that hurt me because it was an action we could fix, especially in that situation because I never was taught what to do in the situation I was in.”
Furthermore, Martin shared how Koenning allegedly has discussed how President Donald Trump should “build the wall and keep Hispanics out of the country” during a meeting with a Hispanic player in the room.
Finally, Martin alleged that Koenning said of the protests, “if people didn’t want to get tear gassed, or push back by the police then they shouldn’t be outside protesting.”