SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 Sports) – University of Utah athletic director Mark Harlan has issued a public apology for a vulgar message sent by a Utes football fan to an Arizona State football player.
Evonnda Fields, the mother of Evan Fields, a defensive back who was ejected from Saturday’s game for targeting on a hit on Utes running back Zack Moss, posted a screen shot of a hateful direct message sent by a Utah fan to her son.
In the message, the fan called Fields a worthless pile of (expletive), and said he should “die for targeting Zack Moss.”
Harlan issued an apology, stating, ““We strongly condemn the behavior of the individual who directed such hatred toward an Arizona State student-athlete. There is no place for such behavior from anybody who represents Utah Athletics directly or indirectly. On behalf of all Utes, I want to offer my apologies to Evan, his family, athletic director Ray Anderson, head coach Herm Edwards and the Arizona State football program. We have already begun to look into the identity of the individual to immediately address this behavior. We encourage all who support the Utes to be respectful and civil in demonstrating their support; Utah Athletics will not tolerate behavior that expresses such hatred.”
The fan’s twitter account, which went under the username @ajpro82, has since been deleted.
The timestamp for the direct message to Evan Fields was listed as Sunday at 1:49 p.m, a day after the game.
“I’m offended by a fan who DM my Son a horrible Hate message,” Evonnda Fields wrote on Twitter. “We all get a lil emotional over our fav teams & players but Student Athletes r still kids in our adult eyes and they have parents that [love] them just as U [love] your 2 sons Dr. A.J. Proctor@proctordental. LEAVEMINEALONE.”