PITTSBURG, California (KRON) — An investigation is underway following a viral video that was posted by the Pittsburg High School marching band showing Deer Valley High School football players practicing through their on-field performance of the National Anthem during Friday night’s game.
KRON 4 viewer reached out to the station to share PHS’s video which was posted Saturday on the band’s Facebook fan page. The clip has garnered several thousand views and prompted outrage, some calling for strict sanctions against DVHS.
The video clearly shows the visiting team practicing plays as the PHS band marches onto the field. The band is heard playing music and standing in a formation while DVHS players, suited up in white uniforms, charge at the band members, dressed in dark uniforms.
According to Sam Whipple, the football players were being disruptive as the band began marching onto the field, then the taunting got worse.
“Deer Valley Varsity Football team being disrespectful and rude to the Pittsburg High School Band and roughing up band members with the coach encouraging it. I did not record all of it and it proceeded to get worse during the national anthem when they charged the band,” he said on Facebook.
It’s unclear if anyone was hurt in the incident, but according to Whipple, one of the coaches allegedly spit on a band member.
“Not only did they shove our band members, they called them names, scared them, yelled at them, cat called them, swore at them, and to top off the cake one of the coaches even spit in the face of one of the band members. This should not be tolerated or allowed to happen,” Whipple said.
Whipple said that the referees issued DVHS a 15-yard penalty on the ensuing kickoff for unsportsmanlike conduct.
“the players should not have been on the field in the first it was the band’s time and that was soooo disrespectful! take it to the board so the coaches and team can be reprimanded for their behavoir[sic]!!!,” said Jeanette Scott in a Facebook comment on the PHS marching band page.
Both schools have called for a joint investigation to determine why the PHS band and the DVHS football team were both on the field at the same time, according to DVHS principal Kenneth Gardner.
“This speculation has spilled over into social media causing an incident between the two school to become more polarizing than need be,” Gardner said in statement.
“This incident continues to be fueled by exchanges on social media I am asking all of us to refrain from making judgments, expressing opinions or speculating on social media because in doing so we do nothing but continue to do harm and be divisive, we have always enjoyed a close working relationship between the two schools with a respectful rivalry on the sporting fields, it is my desire to continue that mutual respect and rivalry despite the incident in question,” said Gardner.