Former Texas State basketball player Jaylen Shead posted to social media June 4 alleging Head Coach Danny Kaspar of making racist remarks to players on the team.
Shead, who transferred to Washington State before his senior year, claims Kaspar abused his power “on a daily basis,” to the point where the team “became numb as it was normal.”
The Star reached out to Kaspar for comment and has yet to receive a response.
“As one of my teammates was running suicides, [Kaspar] told him to ‘chase that chicken’ as ‘encouragement’ to speed up,” Shead said. “One of my teammates from Europe was messing up in practice, [Kaspar] stopped practice to tell him ‘a lot of the boosters/alumni here at [Texas State] are [Donald Trump] supporters, you keep messing up [and] I’ll have you deported.'”
Shead said when Kaspar heard players use the ‘n’ word, Kaspar would tell the players it meant he could say it too. Shead also said Kaspar would make remarks about players “running like the cops are behind” when the team ran suicides.
He said Kaspar would make inappropriate jokes about players’ grades and what he thought their futures would be based on a player’s GPA during a semester—using stereotypes. Shead said Kaspar was also discriminatory toward players having tattoos, wearing durags and earrings.
“[I] explained to him several times [my tattoos’ meanings] and my love for art but he still gave his opinion of how “tacky” they were and that I was better than that.”
Former player Alex Peacock sent a tweet out backing up Shead’s claims of Kaspar making the inappropriate and racist remarks.
“I stand with my boy Jaylen and everything he says 100%,” Peacock tweeted.
Athletic Director Larry Teis issued the following statement: “I personally find these allegations deeply troubling. I, and the entire Department of Athletics staff, take the concerns expressed by our former student-athletes very seriously. At my request, the university has launched a formal investigation through the Office of Equal Opportunity and Title IX. It is our top priority to fully cooperate with the investigation. The Department of Athletics is committed to strengthening our university culture that values and supports diversity, equity and inclusion for our student-athletes, staff, and community.”
University Provost Gene Bourgeois said the allegations are a serious matter that “in any time, but especially these times, the university must take extremely seriously.”
We will continue to provide updates as they are made available.
Daniel Weeks contributed to this story.