Originally written November 18, 2012 on The Majors National:
Golden Gopher leading receiver A.J. Barker has announced Sunday that he’s leaving the team in a rant against head coach Jerry Kill via Tumblr. Barker, a junior walk-on, accumulated 577 yards receiving before an ankle injury against Purdue a couple of weeks ago has held him out ever since. According to Barker’s post on Tumblr, his decision to leave the team arises out of what he calls manipulation and verbal abuse from Kill. This apparently stemmed from how Barker’s ankle injury was dealt with by the Minnesota coaching staff. Now, in honor of my family and myself I’m done with you for good. In light of that pathetic, manipulative display of rage and love you put on this past Thursday, I have come to the decision, with the guidance of my parents and my closest friends, that my time on this team has come to an end. It kills me that I have to do this before the season’s over, but this is the only way I can protect myself against the manipulation and abuse I’d have to endure from you the rest of this season. There’s nothing special about me? I’m a dime a dozen? You don’t know what ********* up things happened to me to screw me up so much as a person”? My stock fell as a person since I got injured? You had 5 of me at Northern Illinois? You say I’ll never earn a scholarship under you? That I don’t deserve one? I guess time will tell to see if this was an isolated incident with Barker or if more players will follow suit with him after the Kill’s alleged abuse and manipulation. Nonetheless Barker wasn’t under scholarship so he is free to transfer to any school and play next season.
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