Pinole teen athlete loses college scholarship after racist rant caught on camera

ALAMEDA, Calif. (KGO) -- The star player of his high school baseball team lost his college scholarship after his racist rant was caught on camera and spread via social media.

The hateful words came from a Pinole Valley High School student, following a game against Saint Mary's College High School of Berkeley Wednesday.

Cellphone video captured tense moments following a high school baseball game Wednesday night. Racial slurs were slung by a Pinole Valley High School player at the family of an opposing player with Saint Mary's High School.

Students shared what happened with their parents. Russell Bloom's teenage son attends Saint Mary's.

"Obviously, I was dismayed, very distressed by what had occurred and without question it was unacceptable," Bloom said.

Recruiters at California State University Northridge discovered the controversy after the athlete was tagged in tweets with the video. They dropped him after he had signed a letter of intent and would've received a scholarship.

"It's given these kids an opportunity to see how far reaching their conduct can be and that's an important lesson," Bloom said.

Due to the sensitive nature of the story, the student is not being named.

"Discipline is essential, consequences are essential, but redemption is also essential," said the principal of St. Mary's, Peter Imperial.

Both school districts put out statements. Students at Saint Mary's brought the discussion into the classroom.

"This is a teachable moment and our greatest hope is that we minimize unnecessary hurt here," Imperial said.

Bloom says some Twitter feeds about the incident continue to be unproductive. He told his son to turn it off.

"Difficult to explain to my son that there are people out there who may not be ready to understand or recognize the power of what happened," he added.

It's a powerful lesson to learn at a young age, acknowledged the family who was the target of the slurs.

"We wish him tremendous luck," said the family. "We pray that this experience teaches him and his friends and family the power of words. It is time to begin the healing process."
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