HS coach suspended after slapping QB
A Florida high school football coach has been suspended for two
weeks of athletics activities after video of him aggressively
slapping a player’s helmet following a bad play went
Mark Guandolo’s Cypress Bay team was trailing American
Heritage 14-7 in the second quarter of a nationally televised 38-14
loss Sunday when Cypress Bay senior quarterback Lucas Tellefsen
overthrew an open receiver on third down.
As Tellefsen approached the sideline, he was confronted by three
coaches, and after a short discussion, Guandolo made contact with
Tellefsen’s helmet as he walked away:
href="http://www.sun-sentinel.com/sports/highschool/broward/sfl-cypress-bay-football-coach-caught-on-camera-slapping-players-helmet-20130826,0,1723890.story" target="_blank">According to the Sun-Sentinel
target="_blank">According to the Sun-Sentinel, Broward County
Schools on Monday suspended 55-year-old Guandolo for three days of
work — he is a physical education teacher at the school
— as well as two weeks of athletic activities.
“I expect every staff member to adhere to the highest
professional standards in every aspect of their interactions with
our students, ” Broward Schools Superintendent Robert W. Runcie
told the paper in a statement.
Added Guandolo: “It’s disappointing and it’s not
something I’m proud of. I have great respect for the
It’s unknown whether Guandolo could face further penalties
for the slap, but the quarterback’s father said he does not
want to see any further punishment levied against the coach.
“It’s a non-issue,” Eric Tellefsen told the Sun-Sentinel.
“We’re 110 percent fine with this. We don’t want
anything to happen to Coach G. He means the world to the school and
this football team and he wants nothing but the best for these
kids. It’s an unfortunate circumstance.
“… He’s coached two of my older sons that are in college
on football scholarships. There’d be a line wrapped around
the corner if you called his players and wanted to know what
he’s done for them.”
Shortly after making contact with the quarterback’s
helmet, Guandolo can be seen reaching to grab Tellefsen as the
camera cuts back to game action. According to Eric Tellefsen,
Guandolo was giving his son a hug that was not seen on
“I was trying to get him ready and fire him up,” Guandolo told
the Sun-Sentinel. “It was his first start ever and emotions were
running high. He had people coming at him and there’s no easy
way to get him ready for that.
“I was just trying to fire him up, but you can’t do it in
today’s day and age.”
Guandolo started coaching at Cypress Bay in 2007 and led the
team to a 56-19 record in his first six years on the job. Last
season, he guided Cypress Bay to the Class 8A state championship
game, making him the first coach in Florida history to lead three
different schools to the state title game.
He coached Miami Southridge to a state runner-up finish in 1999
and took Hollywood (Fla.) Chaminade-Madonna to state championship
games in 2002, 2003 and 2005, winning in 2003 and 2005.