Should high school football have a 'mercy' rule?
Aledo's coaches said they did everything but take a knee Friday night to hold the score down against Western Hills.
They still won 91-0.
The parent of a Western Hills player filed a formal complaint accusing Aledo's coaches of bullying. Aledo released a copy of the complaint with the writer’s named blacked out. It appears to be from a father struggling to make the game a teachable moment for his son.
"We all witnessed bullying first hand, it is not a pretty sight," he wrote.
"You don't want to see their kids give up 91 points," responded Aledo head coach Tim Buchanan. "Our kids aren't very excited at the end of the game, either."
Buchanan said neither his coaches nor his players bullied the losing team.
In the complaint, the father wrote: "I did not know what to say on the ride home to explain the behavior of the Aledo coaches for not easing up."
"I'm not going to ask a football player to go out on the field and not play hard," Coach Buchanan responded, saying that would be insulting to opponents and unfair to his own players who have practiced so hard.
Buchanan said his starters played only about half the game on Friday night.
The Western Hills parent said the lopsided game provided a bad lesson for both teams, writing: "I thought how tough it must have been for the parents of the Aledo football players to explain what happened..."
Aledo's superintendent answered that coaches did use the game as a teaching moment, but not the negative lesson alleged in the bullying complaint.
"I can tell you, our kids learn from our coaches' compassion, and slowing things down," said Superintendent Derek Citty. "It could have been worse than what it was."
Citty said Aledo’s principal talked to the parent, and described him as a gentleman expressing his concern.
Aledo's superintendent hopes the University Scholastic League moves the school into a tougher district next year. The powerhouse program ended up playing weaker Fort Worth teams after Dunbar High moved up to 4A, forcing the UIL to realign districts before last season.
Dunbar has a 3A student population, but is also undefeated this season.
As for this season's Aledo team, even the concerned Western HIlls parent thanked them for showing respect and good sportsmanship to his son.