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6 Feb, 2020 13:22

'You might as well commit suicide': Women's basketball coach slammed for mindless rant at young players

'You might as well commit suicide': Women's basketball coach slammed for mindless rant at young players

A university women's basketball coach told his players they should kill themselves if they weren't prepared to put in more effort on court, according to his former players.

Former NBA first-round draft pick and coach of Southern Methodist University's women's basketball program, Travis Mays, was accused of the shocking statement by a number of his former players, who said his outburst game during a practice session during the 2017-18 season.

Former player Klara Bradshaw posted to her blog saying Mays had told them, "If y'all don't want to get it together, if y'all don't get together and get connected, you might as well go and commit suicide."

The comments hit Bradshaw hard. Her father had committed suicide two years before coach Mays' mindless comment, and was so distraught by it that another coach took her out of the practice session to allow her space to let her emotions out.

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The coach's outburst shocked Bradshaw's teammates, who knew of her father's suicide.

"I remember being like, 'What?' Like why would he just say that?” fellow player Alicia Froling told the Dallas Morning News.

"He just wasn’t — he didn’t care."

Another teammate, McKenzie Adams, tweeted saying that the season in question was "one of the most mentally traumatic experiences ever."

Mays reportedly did eventually apologize to Bradshaw, but only via a very short text message, saying, "Excuse the poor judgement of words. Sorry to upset you. That wasn’t my intention."

But the damage had been done, and Mays' toxic coaching culture had affected both the team he had under his charge at the time, as well as the reputation of the program, with scouted recruits having second thoughts about joining the university's program.

"We actually had a few recruits that asked us personally that were being heavily scouted by Mays, ‘What do you think? Should we go there?’" revealed Bradshaw.

"We told them the honest truth.'Run as far as you can.'"