A Tennessee lawmaker was very apologetic for losing his temper during a high school boys’ basketball game last week when he was caught on camera trying to yank down the pants of a referee.
“I acted the fool tonight,” Republican state Rep. Jeremy Faison said in a statement Tuesday. “I’m hoping to be able to make it right.”
The 45-year-old was courtside in the Providence Academy gym in Johnson City during a game against Lakeway Christian Academy of White Pine when players scrambled to grab a loose ball in the second half. A referee called technical fouls for unsportsmanlike conduct against players from both teams, which prompted Faison to take the court.
He approached the ref and was told to leave the court. “You can’t tell me to leave the floor, this was your fault,” Faison reportedly responded.
The video below shows Faison attempting to pull down the pants of the referee before marching off.
“For years I thought how wrong it is when a parent loses their temper at a sporting event,” Faison said in the statement he posted on Twitter. “It’s not Christian and it’s not mature and it’s embarrassing to the child have always been my thoughts.”
The official, Pendleton, filed a report with the TSSAA, according to The Tennessean, which also reports that there was a request for police though they were never called.
“Unfortunately, I acted the fool tonight and lost my temper on a ref. I was wanting him to fight me. Totally lost my junk and got booted from the from the gym. I’ve never really lost my temper for all to see, but I did tonight and it was completely stupid of me,” Faison said. “Emotions getting in the way of rational thoughts are never good. I hope to be able to find the ref and ask for his forgiveness. I was bad wrong.”
Faison has served as the House Republican Caucus chairman since 2019.