Kings Local School District board member resigns amid rec jersey controversy

KINGS MILLS, OH (FOX19) - A Kings Local School District board member has resigned amid controversy surrounding recreational basketball jerseys.

During a Cincinnati Premier Youth Basketball League game this past weekend, parents of an opposing team noticed players wearing jerseys they found disturbing. The team in question was made up of high school-aged students from the Kings Mill area.

On one side of the jerseys was the team name, the "Wet Dream Team," considered by some to be sexual in nature. On the back of the jerseys, in place of players real names, at least three jerseys showed terms like "Knee Grow" and "Coon" -- terms that have been labeled derogatory and racially insensitive.

League officials shut down the game and said they have dismissed the team from the league.

One of the opposing player's parents, Tony Rue, says the jerseys had been worn for three or four games.

At a Kings Local School District meeting Tuesday, school board member Kerry McKiernan resigned, saying his son was on the "Wet Dream Team." He said he agrees with the actions of the league.

"I'm very sad, disappointed, and regretful at just a terrible situation," McKiernan said. "To whatever degree I'm responsible, I accept that responsibility and apologize."

McKiernan said there were no excuses or explanations for insensitive jerseys and in hindsight he said he should have said something.

"My son is beautiful and he's kind. Our family just associated with this is heartbreaking. It breaks my Christian heart," he said. "I know those boys didn't intentionally want to hurt anybody."

A district spokesperson said an official resignation letter has not yet been submitted.

"Whatever degree I can help the healing, I will. I'd say Gob bless everybody and I'm resigning. I'm resigning because it's the right thing to do that we have to be accountable," McKiernan said.

The district released a statement Tuesday, that can be read here. In it, the district makes clear the team was not school sponsored.

The Cincinnati NAACP is also getting involved. Officials said someone in the Kings community reached out to them for assistance.  They're hoping the players will learn something.

"This is a teachable moment for them to understand how these words are hurtful," Joe Mallory, the first VP of the Cincinnati NAACP said. "They're inflammatory, and they're divisive to the entire community."

Statements released earlier in the week by the league, district, and others can be found here.

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