Passion drove quarterback Trent Dilfer to success at Fresno State and a Super Bowl title with the Baltimore Ravens.
A viral high school football video captured that same intensity, resulting in a Dilfer apology.
Watch: Dilfer Grabs Player by Shoulder Pads
Dilfer is the head coach of Lipscomb Academy a private Christian school in Nashville, Tennessee. He grabbed the shoulder pads of tight end Beau Dawson and screamed in his face. Dawson is the son of the school’s special teams coach and former NFL placekicker Phil Dawson.
The school later issued a statement on Twitter in which Dilfer apologized for his actions. The former Bulldog said he “should have been a better leader and shown greater wisdom. …”
“First and foremost, I take full responsibility as the head coach and leader of our team for not deescalating an emotional situation with one of our players, Beau Dawson,” Dilfer said. “Beau is one of our finest student-athletes and embodies all the characteristics we are looking for in our Mustang players.
“During a moment of frustration in an attempt to get our team to play with more discipline, I unfairly singled Beau out. Somehow Beau Dawson has been portrayed publicly as the culprit in this situation, when in reality I should have been a better leader and shown greater wisdom and discernment in how I handled this incident.”
— Lipscomb Academy Football (@LAmustangFB) August 29, 2021
Dilfer, a former ESPN analyst, took over as Lipscomb’s coach in 2019. He told The Washington Post he needed to do something meaningful and honor the memory of his son, Trevin, who died of heart disease at age 5 in 2003.