Father, football coach brawl; police investigate

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SALT LAKE CITY — University of Utah police are investigating reports of a brawl Thursday between a high school football coach and a man upset over his son's lack of playing time.

Just minutes after Jordan defeated Lone Peak 35-14 to advance to the state 5A championship at Rice-Eccles Stadium, Beetdiggers defensive coordinator Kyle Kafentzis said he was approached by Filiki Malae, a parent of one of his players.

"I guess the father wasn't happy with the amount of playing time his kid was getting," Kafentzis said Friday.

The coach said he didn't want to talk to Malae, but the man wouldn't take no for an answer.

"He just raced in front of me, him and another guy," Kafentzis said, "and all of a sudden I'm getting hit in the back of the head. So at that time, I've got to protect myself."

The coach said the fight just outside the stadium went on for a couple of minutes before police responded.

University of Utah Police Sgt. Garth Smith said two very different stories were being told after officers intervened. No citations were issued, police said.

Attempts to reach Malae for comment Friday were unsuccessful.

"We really don't know (what happened)," Smith said.

According to police, Malae said Kafentzis told him he wanted to fight and that the coach said he "was not scared of any Polynesians."

Malae also told police there is "bad blood" between the two men.

Sandy police say they responded to another incident involving Malae following Jordan's game last week, though no police report was filed.


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Andrew Wittenberg


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