Mount Doug suspends football program after player’s gear doused with urine

Two Mount Douglas players are said to have “unknowingly” doused a teammate’s gear with urine

Turns out even the province’s most dominant high school football program of the modern era isn’t without its problems.

An incident from early May that left the gear of a Mount Douglas Rams player soaked in urine was “the last straw.”

It was the latest in a series of incidents and ended with the senior half of the football program being shut down for 10 days and two students receiving temporary suspensions from school, according to Mount Douglas secondary principal Shawn Boulding. It was meant to be a prank, and ended up shaking the senior football program – which has won four of the last six AAA provincial championships – to its core.

The incident, explained Boulding, involved two players (who weren’t named) entering the football team’s change room, on practice day, and dousing another player’s gear with a water bottle.

“They sprayed the gear so it’s wet, and in hindsight, players do prank each other,” Boulding said. “They thought it would be funny if they sprayed the gear so he’d have to practise in wet gear.”

Problem was, it wasn’t water in the bottle, it was urine.

“Practice time comes and the [victim] lays claim someone has urinated all over his gear,” Boulding said. “As far as someone directly urinating on someone else’s gear, I don’t believe that to be true.”

Boulding says there was plenty of back and forth with the players and with Rams program co-ordinator Mark Townsend – the architect of the team’s success as a high school football dynasty.

The principal sat down with the offending athletes who said they didn’t know the water bottle had urine in it.

Boulding also met with the victim and his parents, and after reviewing it, the victim accepted that the offending boys were unaware there was urine in the bottle and didn’t think it was anything malicious.

“It was difficult, I never could understand the intention of the [offending] boys,” Boulding said.

However, it was not the first incident this season, which led Boulding and Townsend to shut down the program, albeit it for less than two weeks, to “send a message.”

“Certainly in the last few months there’s been a few incidents and I’ve worked with the coach to say, this culture isn’t to the standard we’d like it to be,” Boulding said. “These are student athletes who are students first, so we pulled the plug on the spring season for about 10 to 14 days and talked to the standard of being a student athlete.”

The program stoppage threatened to cancel the Rams controlled scrimmage, a late May game with a Vancouver school that’s basically the only football game of the spring season. It’s also the culmination of the 10-week spring training season.

Eventually Boulding met with Townsend once again and came to a decision based on a belief the kids had made the changes they were asked, and reinstated the season in time for the controlled scrimmage to be held.

Ultimately, the incidents will carry over to the 2017 fall football season with player suspensions, Boulding said.

“I don’t interfere with [the team]. [They’ll have] repercussions moving forward, and there will be player suspensions going into next year,” Boulding said.

The principal shied away from using the term bullying, describing the genesis of this year’s incidents as a dispute between players, though it was namely one player verses many.

“We’re optimistic, we’re always dealing with youth and large numbers of them, and we’ve been working with the leadership of the group to make sure we bridge between expectations of the coaches and the school to move forward on the same page with things,” Boulding said.

Just Posted

Victoria’s Other Secret not so secret anymore

How six Mount Doug teachers turned a lunch jam into $11,000 raised for charity

PHOTOS: Inside the opening of the expanded Westhills Stadium

The grand opening of the expanded stadium in Langford is on schedule for Aug. 24

Take your opportunity to sing at the Royal Theatre

Great Canadian Sing debuts Sept. 8 with inspirational music, talented performers, singalong format

Award-nominated Snotty Nose Rez Kids headline Indigifest 2019 coming to Victoria

Scheduled for Aug. 24, the event is a showcase of Indigenous musicians from around B.C.

Cycslists were all smiles during ninth Tour de Victoria

More than 2,100 cyclists participated

QUIZ: How much do you remember about Woodstock?

Weekend music festival in Bethel, New York, was held 50 years ago

Chrystia Freeland condemns violence in Hong Kong, backs right to peaceful assembly

There have been months of protests in the semi-autonomous region

B.C. VIEWS: Log exports and my other errors so far in 2019

Plastic bags, legislature overspending turn out differently

‘It’s just the freedom:’ Paralyzed Broncos player pursuing life on the water

The former Humboldt Broncos goaltender, who started in the net when he was nine, was paralyzed last year

Canadians killed in Afghanistan honoured during emotional dedication ceremony

One-hundred-fifty-eight Canadian soldiers died during the mission

It’s snow joke: Up to 30 cm of snow expected to fall in northeastern B.C.

Alaska Highway, Fort Nelson to be hit with August snowstorm, according to Environment Canada

Sea-to-Sky Gondola in B.C. likely out of commission until 2020

Sea to Sky Gondola carries between 1,500 and 3,000 people every day during the summer season

Helicopter-riding dog Mr. Bentley now featured on cans of new B.C.-made beer

Partial proceeds from every pack go to Children’s Wish

PHOTOS: Weapons seized at Portland right-wing rally, counterprotests

Not all who gathered Saturday were with right-wing groups or antifa

Most Read