America is the land of opportunity and a place where people can be forgiven for past actions. It is a country renowned for its ability to forgive and forget. Today, Dexter Austin is looking for that same forgiveness.
Austin is an example of what can happen with emotions and tempers flare. As America is so well-known for forgiving, it is time he received a second chance.
A decorated football coach in the Florida area, Austin has compiled a career of highlights on the gridiron. However in 2011, as an assistant coach with the Sarasota Gators football team, his life changed forever on a sunny August afternoon.
Austin was involved in a brawl during a game in a local Sarasota football league. The fight started over a disagreement between Austin and one of the game referees, and it escalated quickly. The argument blew up in the hot Florida sun as tempers flared. Moments later a physical altercation ensued that was caught on video.
Now, nearly six years later SleeperRecruit is trying to help Austin get back into the game he so loves.
The incident that made national headlines came at a time Austin was attempting to cope with the loss of their mother Elizabeth. While his actions cannot be excused, knowing just what he was going through at the time can give some insight into the incident.
Today, Austin reflects back on that time and sees just why a simple misunderstanding in a football game escalated into a physical altercation.
“When losing my mom, unfortunately, I was in an emotional state of mind that took a toll on me,” Austin explained.
After being found guilty in the summer of 2012, Austin served his time for his part in the altercation. A six month house arrest sentence, and the ensuing legal problems he and the team endeared were a time that took a great toll on Austin.
“It has been a challenge trying to show people that was not my character, which was shown on video in August 2011,” Austin said. “That they [football teams] can have confidence in me that I won’t make the same mistake.”
In the heat of the moment, Austin made, as he says ‘a mistake’ that could cost him a chance to work with talented players again. A chance that could help them become better players and people.
However, Austin hasn’t been able to forget those mistakes and finding a way to rebuild his coaching reputation has been a hurdle he is yet to overcome. Luckily, Austin has had the support of his wife, Rachel. She has provide Austin with strength and guidance during his time of need.
“I have been working to take care of my family. It has been difficult because society views you differently and I have not been able to find a coaching position that is willing to give me another chance,” Austin said. “I am trying every day to rebuild trust.”
With Austin’s excellent knowledge of football and his ability to work with youth players, SleeperRecruit believes he has a chance to help young athletes. SleeperRecruit, the premier recruitment agency in the United States for athletes pursuing a college scholarship, recognizes the mistakes Austin has made and wants to give him a second opportunity. One that allows him to help young athletes today.
Austin is seeking a second chance, one that not only gives him the opportunity to coach, but one that will help him shape the lives of youth in a positive way. Austin is capable of being a role model on the football field, but he can be one off it, too.
When asked about what he would say to young athletes after years on the sidelines, Austin doesn’t take long to find the answer.
“Always strive for good sportsmanship and to always make positive choices,” Austin said.