Kyle Shiely

Kyle Shiely has spent the last 10 years studying the sport and business of Mixed Martial Arts. As editor of the No Holds Barred e-newsletter, he's one of the early MMA journalists. He is a licensed MMA judge for the state of Minnesota. Read more about Kyle Shiely

White Bear Lake assistant coach on leave for Obama comments

Posted by: Kyle Shiely Updated: January 13, 2011 - 1:41 PM

A White Bear Lake High School part-time assistant wrestling coach has been put on paid administrative leave because of comments he made following a UFC fight about President Barack Obama.

Jacob Volkmann gained national attention last week when he was contacted by the Secret Service for saying he’d like to “knock some sense” into President Barack Obama during a post-fight interview on January 1. When asked who he would like to fight next, he flippantly replied that didn’t matter, then added: “Actually, Obama. He’s not too bright…. like the make a home affordable plan and his health care plan, someone needs to knock some sense into that idiot.”

According to Volkmann, he met with the director of human resources for the school district on Monday and was told that he would be put on leave while an investigation took place into his comments about the President and the subsequent news interviews.

He said that area parents had complained to the school after seeing him on the news. “The biggest problem was that I was wearing White Bear Lake High School hats and shirts (in the news stories), and that was why parents were calling in.”

“I don’t feel like I was representing the school in a bad way,” Volkmann said. “I’m not just being an anti-Obama person. It is just these two polices is what I’m talking about.”

As far as his original comments, it appeared to Volkmann that what the school was most upset about wasn’t his comments about wanting to fight the President. “Their main complaint was that I said he was an idiot, which was probably a bad word to use.”

Volkmann added he doesn’t regret commenting on Obama’s policies. “The only thing I regret saying is saying that he’s an idiot, that is a bad choice of word,” Volkmann said. “I have a chance to make a difference with something that is affecting my life, why not?”

District spokeperson Marisa Vette confirmed that Volkmann is on paid administrative leave while an investigation takes place “in accordance to the law” and said that she would not be able to offer any other information on the situation due to privacy concerns.

The video of Volkmann’s post-fight interview has appeared on websites and newscasts across the country and was featured last week as a bit on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno”. Volkmann has done multiple interviews, including an appearance on the cable channel Fox Business News last Tuesday, but said that none of it has had any effect on his chiropractic business so far. He added that it should help his fighting career though.

“It is good for me, the UFC likes it, I’m going to have people against me, but I’m going to have supporters too,” Volkmann added.

Volkmann said he does not have any direct contact with the UFC, but that his manager, Monte Cox, had spoken with UFC matchmaker Joe Silva and that UFC was fine with the situation.

Along with being an mixed martial arts fighter, Volkmann has recently started up his own chiropractic clinic in White Bear Lake. He is best known locally for being a three-time All American wrestler while with the University of Minnesota. Along with helping out the White Bear Lake wrestling squad, he coaches the Ice Bears youth wrestling club as well.

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