New Jersey high school football coach says he was fired over number of minority players

CHERRY HILL, New Jersey (WABC) -- Controversy is surrounding the firing of a football coach at a Catholic high school in New Jersey.

Nick Strom says he got fired because there are not enough white students on the team.

He says since his first season at Camden Catholic, the school president has asked him to "get more white players on the field because they would connect with the alumni base."

The coach says the team is now about half minority.

Some parents said they supported Strom. "He's their coach, he's hard, he's tough but guess what, the kids respect him, they love him," said Terence Ward. "We love him as parents."

The principal issued a statement denying Strom's allegations, saying he violated rules, including the dress code. Camden Catholic President Mary Whipkey said she never discussed race with him.

Camden Catholic High School informed Strom on Friday that his contract as a history teacher would not be renewed for next year. The Courier-Post reports he also was asked to resign from his posts as head football and golf coach, and was fired Monday evening.

Strom alleges officials fired him because he isn't "conforming with their viewpoints" on what they want the student body and the football team to look like. He says he was asked multiple times about student athletes' ethnicities.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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