Arkansas school superintendent accused of spitting on game official after football team loses

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WEST MEMPHIS, Ark. — The West Memphis School District Superintendent has resigned from the board of the Arkansas Activities Association following allegations he spit on a game official after a football game.

Jon Collins is accused of spitting on a game official following the Academies of West Memphis’ defeat to the Wynne football team at a Sept. 20 game.

“I’m very appalled in a way,” parent Lesley Darnell told WREG.

“The other ones will probably think, ‘Maybe I can do that too when I get mad,'” Academies of West Memphis student Cameron Wilborn said.

Wilborn and his family said they’re worried about the example Collins’ alleged bad behavior sets for students and athletes at the school.

“Taking matters into your own hands. You don’t like something, do something about it there, and that’s not a good way to show the kids,” Gary Wilborn said.

West Memphis Councilman Wayne Croom is weighing in as well.

“That’s not good. I’m just gonna say that. It’s just not good," Croom said. "You get too involved in the emotional side of the game, and you’ve got to control your emotions."

According to the Democrat-Gazette, Collins resigned as second vice president of the AAA on Tuesday, although the AAA didn’t respond to an email on Wednesday.

In addition, the paper reported he won’t be allowed to attend any West Memphis football games for the remainder of the month and won’t be given sideline access for any sports for two years.

While Wilborn doesn’t condone spitting on game officials, he said he can understand why it might have happened.

“You’re throwing all this type of force to your teammates to make sure that they win and that they lose, I guess all that built up stress just came out eventually on him,” Wilborn said.

While Collins has resigned from the AAA, he remains superintendent of the West Memphis School District.

Collins could not be reached for comment Wednesday afternoon.

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