athletics Football

Illinois State Football Coach resigns suddenly, leaves Message on Door

A football coach at Illinois State University resigned on Thursday after leaving a note on his office door Fox News reported.  Kurt Beathard was the Redbirds’ offensive coordinator.

Coach Beathard confirmed that he did leave a note saying “All Lives Matter to Our Lord & Savior Jesus Christ” after quitting the team, but he did not reveal his reasons for leaving.

According to the Daily Mail (UK), a controversy erupted in late August when Illinois State athletic director Larry Lyons said “All Redbird lives matter” in response to a Black Lives Matter poster being placed in the football team’s locker room.  The poster was quickly and anonymously removed.  

Beathard denied any involvement in the removal of the BLM sign.  “That locker room crap is wrong. I took the sign down somebody put on my door. That’s it,” Beathard said. “I didn’t take anything off that wasn’t put on my door. I wrote the message.”

Beathard is the son of former Pro Football Hall of Fame executive Bobby Beathard.  The elder Beathard, in his role as General Manager, was the architect of the Washington Redskins’ resurgence in the early 1980s.  His Redskins teams won 2 Super Bowls under Head Coach Joe Gibbs.

Kurt Beathard previously served as Illinois State’s offensive coordinator in 2014 and 2015.  His 2014 offense set fifteen single-season school records.  He left his position after the 2015 season to spend more time with his wife and 3 daughters.  He returned to the school in 2018 and had been the team’s offensive coordinator until his abrupt resignation last week.

Illinois State University has not commented publicly on the matter.  

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