534bc7d36716d.preview-300 WINSTON-SALEM — Last November, Bill Hayes, the athletic director at Winston-Salem State University, strongly supported Rams quarterback Rudy Johnson’s assertion that Johnson was attacked by several Virginia State football players in a restroom on Nov. 15, 2013, an incident that led the CIAA to cancel the conference championship game between the schools’ football teams the following day.
In his Nov. 21 letter to CIAA Commissioner Jacqie Carpenter, Hayes wrote that Johnson entered the restroom to blow his nose and wash his hands when several VSU players asked him to confirm that he was the Rams’ starting quarterback. Johnson said he told the VSU players that he was the WSSU starting quarterback. Their conversation then escalated as Johnson was punched in the face and kicked by several Trojan players in the restroom, Hayes wrote.
Hayes’ letter contradicts the findings of an investigation conducted by Robert Clayton, a Washington, D.C. attorney hired by VSU to look into the circumstances of the incident. Clayton concluded that a VSU football player acted alone when he punched Johnson nearly five months ago.
Hayes concluded his letter to Carpenter by saying, “Admittedly, this incident could have easily escalated into a much more serious matter. None of the VSU athletes were hit, attacked or injured. This along exemplifies the discipline instilled in this team. Overall, we were proud of how the team responded with dignity and class.” Read FULL