IOWA - After a record-breaking scoring performance, Clarion-Goldfield-Dows basketball player Rhett Darland says he was blindsided by insults from a college staffer.
Darland set a school record by scoring 34 points in a game on Tuesday, but now he is playing with a heavy heart.
"The game before that he had seven threes and he's just been playing real well in memory of his grandma that was at every game," said Reese Morris, Rhett's brother.
Morris says everyone was surprised by what the basketball player experienced next.
"It was completely out of the blue."
After Rhett set the record, Iowa State women's basketball player development coordinator Adam Urness, a Clarion-Goldfield graduate, sent the high school player direct messages on Twitter criticizing his new single game scoring record. He even used an expletive and made accusations about drug use, among other things.
"Adam went to that school too, so it's even more bizarre that you wouldn't support somebody from your same community and school that's only doing great things in basketball when you are a basketball coach," said Morris.
Iowa State University became aware of the situation on Wednesday before the women's game against Kansas State and said the incident was handled internally. On Thursday, Urness issued an apology on Twitter and in a letter to the Darland family.
"Adam's mom and brother brought over a printed up letter that was pretty generic and wasn't signed by Adam," said Morris. "Adam never said truly, Rhett, I'm sorry, he just said on Twitter he apologized to the Darland family and the same in the letter he apologized."
On Friday, women's head basketball coach Bill Fennelly issued a statement accepting Urness' resignation.
"I think that's the most shocking part honestly, you figured someone who has a love for basketball and coaches would praise a player no matter where he's from," said Morris. "I think he needs a little time to think and come back and be more professional."
Darland has committed to play basketball at Waldorf University in Forest City, Iowa.