ODU coach Chris Malone fired for ‘appalling’ tweet about Stacey Abrams
CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (AP/WAVY) — Chattanooga has fired a former Virginia Tech all-conference lineman and former Old Dominion and James Madison assistant coach following a social media post disparaging both the state of Georgia and Stacey Abrams as “Fat Albert.”
In the tweet caught by screen grabs, offensive line coach Chris Malone posted on Twitter on Tuesday night: “Congratulations to the state GA and Fat Albert @staceyabrams because you have truly shown America the true works of cheating in an election, again!!! Enjoy the buffet, Big Girl!! You earned it!!! Hope the money is good, still not the governor!”
The Twitter account was deleted by Wednesday night.
Chattanooga athletic director Mark Wharton issued a statement Thursday, saying the post was brought to his attention Wednesday night. Chattanooga confirmed Malone has been fired. Wharton did not refer to him by name, saying “that individual” is no longer a part of the program without specifying it was Malone.
“A totally inappropriate social media post by a member of our football staff was brought to my attention,” Wharton said. “The entire post was appalling.”
Football coach Rusty Wright also referred to Malone as “that individual” and called the post unacceptable and said it violated the program’s standards.
Malone was no longer listed on the Chattanooga staff website Thursday morning. Chattanooga played one game in the 2020 season, a loss at Western Kentucky.
Malone, an Emporia native and a former star lineman at Virginia Tech in the ’90s, coached at ODU from 2016 to 2018. He’s also coached at JMU, VMI, and Virginia State, a historically Black university.
Abrams, who lost a close race for governor in Georgia in 2018, has been celebrated by Democrats for her work in increasing voter turnout in Georgia, which ultimately flipped it in favor of Joe Biden and Democratic Senate candidates Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff.