King football suspension lifted after brawl, Cody still sidelined

- A dramatic turnaround by the head of Detroit Public Schools.

The DPS initially ruling that the King High School football team would have to forfeit this week's city championship game against Cass Tech but that ruling was reversed.

A post-game brawl broke out between King and Cody players. Cody Coach Calvin Norman said that he and his staff have been accused of instigating the fight, and his players have been labeled as thugs.

He says neither are true and they are all getting a bad rap because of one player's actions. He's convinced the full video of the incident backs that up and then some.

"You see number 3 here, he looks at a guy, a little guy, and he gives him a nice little hug," Norman said. "But then then the fight breaks out."

They traded hugs and handshakes before trading punches.

Norman wants to set the record straight about the brawl that tarnished his football program, nearly dashed King's city championship goals and may cost him his job.

"This is not who I am, I am not that kind of coach," he said. "I've been coaching for many years and I love these boys. And I will do anything for these boys and they know it."

Norman says he and his team not know King's coaches would not shake their hands after the game. But Norman, who says he's big on sportsmanship, insisted. The athletic director and referees seem to give the okay.

In the video, players from Cody are in white, King players wearing black.

"Once everybody got the okay to shake hands, that's what happened," he said. "They were embracing those guys, they were showing those guys love, they were congratulating them saying go ahead and win state."

But that all changed when a player from Cody, one whom Norman says he kicked off the team,  took a swing at a King player.

"My player kind of gets away, some of the players kind of get away," Norman said. "But the King players rush to fight, so now it's mayhem all over the place.

The fight died down but a Cody player got angry because his mother was ran over, during the scuffle.

"This kid right here, but the athletic director has him and my players have him, pushing him away," Norman said. "But the King players rushed to that situation. My players and my coaches try to build a wall to tell the King players to move back. As you can see, King coaches are not saying anything to their players."

Norman says most of  his players kept retreating and King players kept going after them.

"As you see, number 14, 27, 13 they catch number 15 and number 11, they catch number 15 in the corner," Norman said. "And when they catch number 15 in the corner, bam there it goes."

King High School is gearing up for a city championship game with Cass Tech Friday.

DPS Emergency Manager Darnell Early reversed a decision that would have made King forfeit that game.

The indefinite suspension of Cody's football coaches and cancellation of their game Friday stands, even after Norman says Early watched this video

FOX 2: "Should King play against Cass Friday?"

"Personally I think if they're able to play, we should be able to play," Norman said. "If they get the opportunity, don't favor them because they are the number one team in the state."

There has been no official comment from the head coach at King, but FOX 2 did speak with someone on the coaching staff  who said the emergency manager saw the video, made his decision and they are standing by it.

He said above all, they're focusing on the city championship game against Cass Tech at Ford Field Friday, not Coach Norman's take on what happened last Friday.

Watch the full video included in this story to draw your own conclusions.


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