Football Coach Forces Players To Do Hundreds Of Pushups Before Several Hospitalized

The football coach at Rockwall-Heath High School near Dallas was placed on leave after the alleged incident.

A Dallas-area football coach ordered his Rockwall-Heath High School players to perform hundreds of pushups in a conditioning class before several were hospitalized, according to reports.

WFAA-TV, an ABC affiliate, reported that multiple athletes were diagnosed with rhabdomyolysis after doing about 400 pushups. Rhabdomyolysis is a sometimes fatal condition stemming from damaged muscle tissue that can cause kidney damage or failure, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“As a parent we send our kids to school trusting that they will be cared for at the highest level. That has been the case until this unfortunate event,” the mother of one athlete told Fox 4.

WFAA’s Matt Howerton shared a letter from the school district telling parents that head football coach John Harrell had been placed on administrative leave amid an investigation. HuffPost couldn’t immediately reach Harrell for comment.

Several players required medical attention or hospitalization after the Jan. 6 training, the letter said. Parents were asked to monitor their children for sharp arm pain or dark urine.

Brady Luff, a captain on the team, said he did not believe Harrell was punishing the players. He said plenty of water was available and players were free to leave the workout.

The coach would “never make us do a workout thinking that it was gonna put any of us at risk,” Luff said in the interview below.

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