Video footage of a Georgia athletics coach known for helping students get recruited with top-level colleges has gone viral with the coach ...
Video footage of a Georgia athletics coach known for helping students get recruited with top-level colleges has gone viral with the coach filmed using extremely racist and vile language—and most of it is geared toward people who look like many of the students he trains.
On social media, Mark Taylor, who is white and leads Speed Edge Sports in Macon, claims to have been the “[Georgia High School Association] Coach of The Year for track 6 years in a row” and a former University of Georgia defensive end who has gotten more than “60 athletes at D1 schools and 16 in the NFL.” Many of Taylor’s social media posts feature him training Black student-athletes, some of whom have gone on to play professional sports.
Clips of the trainer were shared on Facebook on April 10 by Lauren Angelica Law, a self-proclaimed civil rights activist. It is unclear how Law obtained the videos or when they were filmed.
“RACIST Mark Taylor, Warner Robins Ga, speed training trainer/coach for High school athletes, leaked video showing gross racial behavior in Atlanta Ga,” her post read. “Murderous threats towards the same race of people he coaches. Most of his clients are the same color he despises. Share this everywhere.”
In the first clip, a man who appears to be Taylor says he’s driving through downtown Atlanta at night. “Ain’t seen a white person in sight. Homeless ones on the street. Every restaurant, looking here, is Black. Every car… beside me is Black. They can have Atlanta. It used to be a fun place to come to, up here,” he says, before criticizing a billboard that allegedly pictured Obama “and all them on there.”
He mentions people going to Atlanta “to go hunting” before turning the camera around to show his face. “Ain’t nothing but Blacks up here,” he says. “It’s all it is. Atlanta’s just gone down, man. Just gone.”
In a second clip, a person appearing to be Taylor films a Black woman driving a white car as he says, “Look at that n—– trying to pull out in front of me, right here.”
“Do you see that tree, right there?” he says, turning the camera towards a tree by the street. “Ro will hang you from that tree. Yeah!”
In a third clip, Taylor films a bedside table with a clock, gun, and phone on it, then turns the camera on himself as he picks up the phone and jokes, “Room service.”
“I need y’all n—— to bring me some chicken wings, two hoes. A redbone and a white girl.” Using a term that can be derogatory for a fair-skinned Black woman with red undertones, he continues, “Yeah, I want the white girl. Ro want to try the redbone…. Ro. …He probably throw her out the window when he done with her.”
“Atlanta, Atlanta,” Taylor continues. “N—– town.”
It is unclear who Taylor is referencing with “Ro.”
Two of the videos were later shared by social media activist Shaun King, who alleged major football and athletics programs at Clemson, University of Alabama, the University of Georgia, and the University of Florida have worked with Taylor.
Clemson Assistant Athletic Director for Football Communications Ross Taylor told The Daily Beast that Taylor was always brought to the campus as a guest with a prospective student, but he said the university didn’t have a formal relationship with Taylor.
“He’s not employed by us, hasn’t been employed by us. Frankly, he was just here as a guest of high school kids that were looking into potentially coming [to Clemson],” the assistant athletics director said. “So, we really have no association with him.”
The Georgia High School Association told The Daily Beast that Taylor had no relationship with the organization or its member schools.
“It is my understanding that he is [a] private trainer. He is not nor has he ever been employed by the GHSA,” executive director Dr. Robin Hines said.
Other universities tagged in King’s post did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Karen Buckman, a white mother whose son trained under Taylor, told CBS Macon that the coach “shouldn’t be around kids.”
“Our parents need to know what they’re walking into,” she told the news outlet. “You don’t have to be a parent of a Black child or any person of color to be horrified or think this is horrendous.”
Curtis Harris, a Black man whose son was coached by Taylor, told local outlet WGXA News that Taylor would go out of his way to talk about how he helped Black kids.
“If you gotta start telling what you’re doing for other people,” Harris said, “you’re not doing it for the right reasons.”
According to CBS Macon, Taylor was previously accused of harassing his ex-fiancée, was fired from teaching and coaching at Houston County Schools, pleaded guilty to a felony charge of influencing a witness, and was banished from Houston County in 2007. The outlet also reported that Taylor rented a space at private school Central Fellowship Christian Academy to train students.
In a statement Monday, Central Fellowship Christian Academy said it was “shocked” by the videos.
“With this said, people have associated Mark Taylor with our ministry, and that is an error,” the organization said. “He is neither an employee of Central Fellowship Christian Academy nor a member of Central Fellowship Baptist Church. He has rented a portion of our facility to train athletes who are typically from schools in our local area.”
The academy said it had ended its relationship with Taylor “effective immediately.”
Taylor failed to respond to The Daily Beast’s multiple requests for comments via phone and email.