Volleyball Player Booted From Team After Coach Says Her Photos Are ‘Too Sexy’
Photo: skyneshe (Getty Images)
Early last year we told you a story about a North Carolina student who was suspended for wearing an off-the-shoulder tank — a suspension that was deemed absurd by many. But now we have another baffling story of a former student at the University of Cincinnati who was kicked off the volleyball team after sharing photos her coach called “too sexy.”
According to BuzzFeed, Shalom Ifeanyi has now filed a federal discrimination lawsuit saying that she was kicked off the volleyball team after posting photos that were “too sexy” on Instagram. Ifeanyi believes she was discriminated against on the basis of race and gender by the University of Cincinnati’s head women’s volleyball coach, Molly Alvey, who kicked her off the team. Because of this, Ifeanyi also lost her athletic scholarship.
“Almost immediately upon her arrival on campus, Alvey began harassing and shaming [Ifeanyi] about pictures she was posting on her personal social media accounts,” according to the lawsuit.
Alvey allegedly told Ifeanyi the photos, in which she was fully clothed, were “too sexy.” Ifeanyi removed them from her Instagram out of fear of retaliation. According to the lawsuit, the coach did not ask other members of the women’s volleyball team — who were of slighter build and lighter complexion — to remove photos of themselves in two-piece swimsuits.
Ifeanyi also claims that Alvey told her this behind closed doors:
“When the football players see this, what do you think they see? They see your breasts. It’s seductive,” Alvey said of the above photo.
Alvey then texted Ifeanyi once again:
Some of the text reads:
“My teammates have swimsuit photos that are more revealing than me in a tank top. I will delete them if you really want me too [sic] but I feel like because people say I’m pretty I’m being sexualized. There’s a history of black women because of their bodies being sexualized and that’s what appears to be happening to me. I can’t help the way I’m built. I am not trying to argue, I just feel like I have to be flat chested or really skinny in order to post.”
Eventually Ifeanyi was booted from the team because, according to her coach, they each had “different philosophies.”
The lawsuit was filed nine months ago and the investigation continues.
My take? Pretty ridiculous for an uptight coach to boot a player over what are clearly normal selfies of someone who clearly isn’t flat-chested.
What do you think? Who is in the wrong here? Do you agree with the coach?