Two Middle Tennessee State University football players are under investigation for animal cruelty after a video has surfaced of the players abusing a puppy.
Justin Akins and Shalom Alvarez, who can be seen on the video maintain that it is a common disciplinary technique. Although Akins isn't seen on the video, it was posted to his Snapchat account where it was then recorded by a concerned party before it disappeared.
Head coach Rick Stockstill gave a statement once he was made aware of the investigation on his players.
"I am aware of the situation and have talked to the players involved," Stockstill told WSMV. "The players explained to me that the puppy urinated inside and they were simply spanking it as a form of discipline. They told me there was never any intent to harm the dog. This was an important teaching moment. I talked to them about other approaches that should have been considered in this situation. And I pointed out how disciplining a pet in such a manner could be miscontrued, especially with the impact of social media."
The players are suspended as the investigation continues.