In Play with Tom Markowski


  • All

Cody coach Calvin Norman insists he has video that shows his team has been made a scapegoat in brawl aftermath

By: Tom Markowski, October 20, 2015, 9:11 pm



Detroit – A picture might be worth a thousand words but the video Detroit Cody coach Calvin Norman released today could be worth more.

What Norman is hoping for is that the release of the video will vindicate his team get his job back.

Norman and his staff were indefinitely suspended by Alvin Ward, the director of athletics for the Detroit Public Schools following what Ward said was a “brawl” that took place after Cody’s 20-2 PSL semifinal loss to Detroit King last Friday at Detroit Northwestern field.

Ward cancelled King’s championship game against Detroit Cass Tech saying King’s involvement in the fight prompted his actions.

Ward also ruled that Cody’s season ended without playing a ninth game this week.

Darnell Earley, the Emergency Manager for DPS, overruled Ward’s decision on Tuesday and stated in a letter that the championship game would be played Friday at Ford Field at 7 p.m.

That reversal did not sit well with Norman, whose team, the coaching staff and school, he contends, has been made a scapegoat. Norman went on to say that King was the aggressor and that the video will show that.

The video is expected to air on Fox 2 News (10 p.m.) and WDIV (11 p.m.) on Tuesday evening.

“They will have a problem on their hands,” Norman said. “The video will prove it. I want to coach at Cody. That’s why I’m fighting for it.

“You gave King a pass. You have Cody’s staff indefinitely suspended. You have King’s staff ready to coach.

“King is not innocent. The video shows my coaches getting between King and Cody players, and the King players kept coming. Alvin Ward said I did not follow protocol. He was right there next to me. They never talked to me (after the incident). If Alvin Ward wouldn’t have lied to me I wouldn’t have to do this.

“All I wanted was to have my job. They should be equal in their suspensions.”

Cody is 2-6. King is 8-0 and ranked No. 1. King has a dozen or so players who either have been offered a Division I scholarship or have committed. Cody has less than half that number. Norman said King is getting preferential treatment because it is a high-profiled school.

“They didn’t do the proper procedure,” Norman said. “They just say Cody is bad. King is everybody’s choice. Cody is not everybody’s choice.

“I need to clear my name. They left me no choice. I’m trying to make DPS look bad. I’m not trying to make King look bad. I respect DPS. I’m a part of DPS. I respect King.

“I’m not saying some of my kids didn’t fight. I’m saying the King kids did more. All of those people who supported King, like Earley, will have egg on their face.”

Ward said Norman was responsible from the start. Ward said it was his decision to cancel the game and that he is not happy his decision was overruled.

“It was a collective decision,” he said. “The public is strange. They see things from their own views.

“I have no comment on the video. The decision and the statement from the EM says it all.”

DPS would have suffered financially had the King-Cass Tech game was cancelled. Ward estimates that at least 8,000 will attend Friday’s game. At $10 a ticket that’s $80,000. Ward estimated that it cost DPS between $25,000 and $30,000 to rest Ford Field.

Norman is in his eighth season at Cody’s head coach. From 1995-2000 he was the school’s junior varsity coach. He coached in the Police Athletic League (PAL) in between stints at Cody, his alma mater.