Holy Family coach John O'Connor and sophomore Matt Kravchuk sat next to each other and their lawyers on the set of "Good Morning America" today for the first time since an incident in which O'Connor knocked Kravchuk to the ground during a drill and appeared to kick him while he was down.
During the interview, O'Connor does not acknowledge that what he did crossed the line, yet at the same time said it was a mistake. The former Georgia Tech assistant's apology to Kravchuk on live television didn't go over well.
"Matt, this was an accident. I was just trying to make this a better team, make us more competitive and in doing so an accident happened and it was unintentional by me. I'm really sorry that it happened," O'Connor told Kravchuk.
Kravchuk, a college sophomore, wasn't buying the apology.
"To be honest, it's kind of hard to accept your apology, just because you claim it's justified, you claim you weren't crossing the line. ... As your player I'm supposed to be able to respect you and I don't feel I can do that anymore," Kravchuk said.
There are numerous awkward and cringe-worthy moments, including when the coach is offered a chance to apologize and doesn't tell Kravchuk to his face until George Stephanopoulos encourages him to do so. There's also a dispute among both parties as to whether or not the entire team stands behind the coach, with the lawyers picking apart each statement that's made.
It's a bad situation all around, but also one that's provoking discussion about just how far a coach can go with his players. In this case, even on national television, there were no easy answers.