Wednesday, August 27, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
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Mom questions twins\’ dismissal from Lady Devils

By
January 1, 2011 |

Enterprise staff writer

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Davis High girls basketball coach Jeff Christian stands behind his decision to remove standout

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twin-sister players Khaliya and Malika Wilkins from the Lady Blue Devils\’ roster.

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But since her daughters\’ dismissal from the team last week, the girls\’ mother, Lorraine Wilkins, has been publicly critical of the situation, posting some of her concerns on The Davis Enterprise website, while reaching out for what she calls “a more positive outcome for the girls.”

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After a last-minute loss to Inderkum High during the Dixon Ram Jam tournament on Tuesday, Christian released the Wilkins sisters “for conduct detrimental to the team.”

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The elder Wilkins says Christian has been “biased” in his dealings with Malika and Khaliya. The Wilkinses were the second and third players dismissed from the squad, following the removal of junior center Ali Robertson “for conduct detrimental to the team” more than two weeks ago.

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Christian called a mid-December meeting with Lorraine Wilkins and her daughters, DHS Athletic Director Dennis Foster and school district security chief Marc Hicks. Assistant coaches Karen Foster and Hilary Brittan also were at the meeting.

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Christian and Foster declined comment about the meeting, but The Enterprise has learned it

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involved pinpointing — among other things — alleged earlier drug and alcohol use among other

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players.

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In a note written after that meeting, Lorraine Wilkins said, “Coach Christian has been targeting my girls for a while and has been emotionally abusive toward them.” She went on to cite a laundry list of concerns, many of which revolve around the reasons behind that

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mid-December meeting.

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Lorraine Wilkins says her daughters were not involved in alcohol or controlled substance abuse. “Everyone knows they don\’t smoke or drink (or do) drugs.”

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The Enterprise has learned that Christian allegedly was not accusing the Wilkins twins of drug or alcohol use or possession, but was scolding them for not handling the situation better as it unfolded around them.

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“They are expected to be leaders at a party prior to basketball season, but (Christian) doesn\’t think enough of them to make them official captains, even though they have seniority,” Lorraine Wilkins said.

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In her Dec. 17 note (and in another note dated Dec. 13), Wilkins cites a handful of encounters in which she believes her daughters were unfairly singled out, challenged or accused by Christian.

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In reaction to the senior Wilkins\’ claims or whether there will be further discussion of the

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girls\’ inclusion as team members, Christian said Saturday, “I have no comment. We\’ve moved forward. We have our team.”

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Davis was off to a 9-3 start before the Inderkum meltdown, a setback in which the Blue Devils blew a 45-44 lead with 15 seconds left.

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According to observers, Christian was upset and left the gym early. Others report at least one Wilkins sister and the coach “growled at each other” near the game\’s conclusion.

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News of the Wilkinses\’ dismissal from the team came the next day — Wednesday, an off day.

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Playing without Malika and Khaliya on Thursday, Will C. Wood beat DHS, 45-37. With the Wilkinses in the lineup, the Devils twice beat the Wildcats earlier in the season.

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The Wilkins twins led the team in almost every offensive and defensive category.

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The Blue Devils (9-5) play at St. Francis on Thursday and at Rosemont on Saturday.

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“We have appealed to leadership within the district for a more positive outcome for the girls, and we\’re waiting for that process to run its course,” Lorraine Wilkins said Saturday. “And, yes, the girls are very upset, but they have no more comment than that at this time.”

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Wilkins added to her concerns about the mid-December meeting, saying Foster, in his first year

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as athletic director, “operated outside the policies and norms of the school … and indirectly

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intimidated us with his presence — and the probability that my girls would no longer be able to play basketball.”

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She went on to say Foster\’s “attitude and disposition were belligerent and rude.”

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“(Her) comments are in reference to an internal, informational meeting that occurred three weeks ago,” Foster said Saturday. “As far as the school and the athletic department are concerned, the issue that this meeting was in reference (to) was closed that evening.

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“(DHS Principal Jacqui) Moore is well aware of that early December meeting and there is

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no further action planned at this time,” Foster continued.

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“As the athletic director, I support all coaches\’ ability to discipline players as they see fit within school, athletic department and program guidelines.”

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— Reach Bruce Gallaudet at bgallaudet@davisenterprise.net or (530) 747-8047. Comment

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on this article at www.davisenterprise.com

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