BROOKLYN, Ohio (AP) — An Ohio high school football coach resigned Monday after his team used racist and anti-Semitic language to denounce plays during a game last week.
Brooklyn High School coach Tim McFarland and his players repeatedly used the word “Nazi” as a play call in a game against Beachwood High School. Beachwood, a suburb of Cleveland, is about 90% Jewish, according to the Jewish Federation of Cleveland’s most recent 2011 survey.
According to Beachwood Schools Superintendent Robert Hardis, the Brooklyn team stopped using the term in the second half of the game after Beachwood threatened to take its players off the field. However, several Brooklyn players continued to direct racial slurs toward Beachwood players during the game, the statement said.
McFarland submitted his resignation Monday morning. Brooklyn Schools Superintendent Ted Caleris said in a statement that McFarland “expresses his deepest regret” and that he and the school apologize for “hurtful and harmful statements” that “will not be tolerated.”
Caleris also stated that Brooklyn High School has been contacted by the Anti-Defamation League of Ohio and hopes to use them as a resource as the incident continues.
Hardis confirmed in a statement that the two school districts were in close contact and that Brooklyn was “appropriately concerned and apologetic.”
“This is not the first time Beachwood student-athletes have been subjected to anti-Semitic and racist comments,” Hardis also said. “We always hope it will be the last time.”
The statements did not mention any disciplinary action against the players involved.
According to a study by Tel Aviv University’s Center for the Study of Contemporary European Jewry and the U.S.-based Anti-Defamation League, anti-Semitism in the United States has increased significantly in recent years, with no signs of declining. From 2021 to 2022, the number of anti-Semitic incidents increased by 35%.