Bethune-Cookman Students Protest After Ed Reed Was Fired As Head Football Coach, University Officials Accused Of Ignoring Campus Mold & Rat Problems
It looks like the drama at Bethune-Cookman University is just getting started.
As previously reported, Bethune-Cookman University made headlines over the weekend for the firing of head football coach Ed Reed. The retired professional athlete was recently hired to lead the HBCU’s football department in hopes of taking the team to the next level. However, it didn’t take long for issues between the university’s officials and Ed Reed to surface. Last week, Ed Reed issued an apology for a video he released blasting the school’s leaders for the status of the football facilities and his office. According to the Pro Football Hall of Famer, when he arrived on campus he had to spend time cleaning up trash around the football grounds and his personal workspace. Despite his apology, over the weekend Reed broke the news to his athletes that the institution made the decision to let him go.
However, it looks like Reed isn’t alone in his complaints. According to reports, students at Bethune-Cookman are now protesting and calling for the Board of Trustees’ removal. They’re also demanding that Reed’s coaching position is reinstated. In videos shared online of the protest, students can be heard chanting,
“Hey hey, ho ho, the Board of Trustees got to go!”
Bethune Cookman students are calling for the Board of Trustees' removal. They say campus facilities have many issues the school isn't addressing. Ed Reed spoke out and contract negotiations broke down, which was the "icing on the cake." @WFTV pic.twitter.com/mSrsUSik8l
— Nick Papantonis WFTV (@NPapantonisWFTV) January 23, 2023
The students – who reportedly pay $30,000 a year in tuition – are airing out the University for ignoring alleged issues of rats, mold, and a lack of hot water in the dorms. In addition, multiple students claim they have to leave their dorm windows open year-round because there’s no AC.
One student – who asked not to be identified, for fear of losing her scholarship – shared with a local news department,
“What started off as my dream school turned into something that’s far less than what I thought.”
Another student added,
“We’re constantly pouring money into this institution, and we feel like it’s not being poured back into us. We’re not seeing change. They just keep giving us false promises.”
Football players have started a petition in hopes that Reed will be allowed to return as their head coach. In part, the petition states,
“We firmly believe that the abrupt dismissal of our newly hired head coach Ed Reed is unjust not only to the student-athletes but to the entire BCU family, community and does not align with our founders’ legacy.”
Reed has yet to directly speak on the student’s protest or the petition calling for his return, but he has shared images of students cleaning the campus on his behalf via his IG stories.
Do you think Bethune-Cookman University made a mistake by letting go of Ed Reed? Tell us in the comments below!