SPRINGDALE, Md. (DC News Now) — A Prince George’s County high school varsity football team was outraged after finding out its football season came to an end after accusations that it had an ineligible player on the team.
“To penalize our entire football team is disheartening,” said Nekisha Fowler, parent of a Flowers High School football player.
The team was accused of having a player on the team for a fifth year. The news came just before its playoff game on Friday against Eleanor Roosevelt High School.
Fowler and many other parents believe this was a mistake.
“We definitely believe that this was an oversight because we have had situations in the past where our coaching staff had to comply and they did, so they would have done the same thing here had they been aware of what was going on,” she said.
Parents said this disqualification didn’t only impact one teammate — it affected the entire team, including seniors with dreams of playing in college.
“This is their senior year. They want to go out with a bang… So this was opportunity for our boys to get some college students and college offers,” said Fowler.
The team and parents held a rally on Monday in the hopes the county will overturn their decision, but she says they have yet to get an answer.
“As much as the parents can try to keep this from our kids, they constantly say, ‘Is it done? Are we going to play?’ And we have to constantly come back with, ‘We don’t know. We’re still fighting.’ It’s a roller coaster ride,” Fowler said.
“We understand that there are rules and regulations, but could you consider that we have 60 kids that are not a part of this mistake, this mishap,” she added.
Despite not getting answers from the school system just yet, parents said they will continue to fight to ensure something like this doesn’t happen again.
“We’re here fighting for every county resident, every county student, every county athlete to say hey, if something happens, yes, we know that there’s due process, but consider our youth,” Fowler said.
The head football coach was also suspended. Prince George’s County Public Schools says they could not provide any further information at the time.