A high school wrestler was forced to have his dreadlocks cut off to avoid a forfeit in a New Jersey high school tournament. The story may be one of team unity or a racially-charged incident where a teenager was unfairly targeted by a referee with a troubled history of racism.
Buena Regional High School had a meet with Oakcrest High on Wednesday, and wrestler Andrew Johnson had his hair covered before his 120-pound match against an Oakcrest opponent. But the referee, Alan Maloney, said that Johnson’s hair would not work. According to SNH Today, Johnson was given an ultimatum: Either he had to cut his hair or forfeit.
The journalist who captured footage of Johnson getting his dreadlocks frantically cut off called him a “team player,” but many pointed out that the referee who made him ruin his haircut has a history of trouble.