Two former baseball coaches sue over alleged wrongful firing
Thursday, November 01, 2007
(New Jersey-WABC, November 1, 2007) (WABC) -- An Eyewitness News exclusive as two baseball coaches at a New Jersey prep school are filing a racial discrimination suit.
They claim they were fired for cursing on the field.These men spoke exclusively with New Jersey reporter Anthony Johnson. Don Bosco has always been a football powerhouse, and trying to improve the baseball record they went out to try and hire some successful coaches. One of those coaches happen to be a former Major League Baseball player. But following a foul language incident, both of the coaches were fired. Former coach Leon Matthews wants to continue coaching baseball. He has coached throughout his life working with young kids. He does not want to be the poster child for coaches that curse at their players. "I think if I were not African American, I would still be the coach at Don Bosco Prep," said Matthews. Matthews spoke exclusively to Eyewitness News following a wrongful termination lawsuit filed against the school. Matthews and former pro baseball player Bobby Jones say they were fired following allegedly cursing at kids after there first loss of the season on May 2nd. At that time the team was 14-1. Matthews says he never used foul language during a team meeting after that loss, and has helped many kids turn into excellent ballplayers. "20 plus kids going to division one schools and a couple of kids getting drafted into pro baseball over the last few years I think is a pretty good record," Matthews adds. Matthews claims he made sacrifices to help the kids at Don Bosco Prep become successful working overtime even though he was only making $4,700 a season. Matthews and his lawyer claim it was the parents that conspired to have the black coaches terminated. Officials at the school are not commenting about the lawsuit. Eyewitness News did get the chance to speak to one parent, who says she's seen many games and can't remember a time when a coach did not curse on the field.
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