Illinois HS coaching staff fired after player elbowed opponent in face

January 8, 2024 / Athletic AdministrationBasketballCoaching
An Illinois boys varsity coaching staff has been fired for the actions of one of its players during a holiday tournament.

Josh Bradley and his Eldorado High School varsity boys basketball coaching staff were fired at a special meeting of the school board. The meeting was called after one of Bradley’s players struck an opposing player with an elbow to the face during a free-throw attempt.

illinoisA recent story from WPSD Local 6 detailed the board’s decision with a summary of the meeting.

Below is an excerpt from the WPSD Local 6 story.

Video showed that the Hamilton County player fell to the floor, got up, and fell back to the floor once again. His injuries required medical attention and the young man was unable to return to the game.

Video of the incident has gone viral since the incident happened.

The meeting started with an executive session to determine whether to terminate, with pay, Bradley and the assistant coaches.

“Before my vote, I want to thank anyone for being here,” said board member Austin Bradley. “I’m embarrassed that a decision is being made before a thorough investigation and before hearing your comments.”

Bradley abstained from voting and received standing ovations. Another board member abstained from voting on the hiring of a new coach, Rod Wallace, but the rest of the board voted in favor.

Bradley said the school did not interview the new coach.

Although there were more than 100 in attendance, the vast majority were in support of Coach Bradley. Few had the opportunity to speak in the allotted time for public commentary.

“Any time I’ve had any interaction with Bradley, it has been positive,” said Jimmy Butler. “To do this to a man, let him coach for 22 years and then treat him like this, it has to be a personal agenda. You’re opening up a can of worms that shouldn’t have been opened.”

Other townsfolk said Coach Bradley deserved a better fate, often pointing out what they said was his positive interaction with the youth of the community.

One said the Eldorado player “made a mistake,” but absolved the coach of any responsibility.

To read the full story from WPSD Local 6 about the Illinois coach, click here.