Skip to content

Eastern Michigan apologizes for player’s postgame sucker punch


Eastern Michigan’s athletic director released a statement Sunday condemning and apologizing for the actions of defensive back Korey Hernandez after the Eagles’ bowl game loss to South Alabama.

After South Alabama defeated Eastern Michigan 59-10 in the 68 Ventures Bowl on Saturday, players from South Alabama remained on the field while their marching band performed the school’s alma mater. Video that circulated online showed Hernandez run across the field by himself, without his own helmet on, and punched unsuspecting South Alabama cornerback Jamarrien Burt in the back of the head.

The move prompted a skirmish as South Alabama players came to Burt’s defense, and the teams had to be separated.

“We strongly condemn the actions of some of the student-athletes on the EMU football team in the ugly incident that took place following last night’s 68 Ventures Bowl,” Eastern Michigan athletic director Scott Wetherbee said in a statement Sunday. “We are deeply upset and embarrassed by what happened.

“Their conduct does not reflect the great pride and high standards we place on the game and our program, and the expectations for good sportsmanship and exemplary conduct of student-athletes on and off the field. What happened was completely unacceptable. We apologize to the Eastern Michigan University community and to the South Alabama team and their fans.”

Wetherbee said Eastern Michigan is “committed to sharing information and video to fully understand all that occurred.” The school is also in contact with the Mid-American Conference.

As of Sunday, no punishment had been determined or announced for Hernandez, who is a graduate student according to the team’s roster online.

“While we are disappointed in the incident that occurred following our team’s victory,” South Alabama athletic director Joel Erdmann said in a statement, “we are grateful to the leadership at Eastern Michigan University for taking ownership of the incident and reaching out to our leadership here at South Alabama to apologize and ensure us they will fully investigate the matter. We do not believe this incident is in any way reflective of the values of Eastern Michigan University or its football program. We hope this situation will not take away from the fact that the Jaguars are 68 Ventures Bowl Champions.”

–Field Level Media

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.