The former head coach of Nihon University's American football team has been caught on tape praising a player who injured an opponent in a match earlier this month.
NHK has obtained an audio recording of ex-head coach Masato Uchida speaking to reporters immediately after the game on May 6th.
A Nihon University defender committed a foul against a Kwansei Gakuin University quarterback, tackling him from behind after the quarterback passed the ball.
The dangerous play caused the quarterback to suffer an injury that a doctor said would take 3 weeks to heal.
Uchida resigned as Nihon University head coach nearly 2 weeks later, after coming under fire over the foul.
On Tuesday, the Nihon University player held a news conference accompanied by a lawyer. He said he had been instructed to commit the foul by Uchida and one of the other coaches.
Uchida denied the allegation at a news conference on Wednesday. But at the same news conference, coach Tsutomu Inoue admitted that he had told the player to "crush the quarterback."
In the audio clip recorded just after the game on May 6th, Uchida was questioned by reporters about the player being sent off for a series of fouls. He replied that it was inevitable because he was the head coach, and said the team had always been that way.
He also said he had been putting a lot of pressure on the player who committed the fouls.
Asked whether he thought the player had misunderstood his instructions, Uchida replied that this was the first time the player had brought himself to do as he was told.
Uchida said it was necessary for players to go that far. He added that if this resulted in fouls, he would take responsibility.
Uchida said he had been encouraging his players to play that way. He said this was bad, but it was his method. He said the player had done very well, though noted that it may have been legally bad.
Uchida said he needed to train and push the player harder. Otherwise, he said his side could not beat a team like Kwansei Gakuin.
Uchida also told reporters that he wouldn't mind if they wrote that he had ordered the player to commit the foul.
At Wednesday's news conference, Uchida was asked about these recorded remarks. While repeating his denial that he had instructed the player to commit fouls, he said that he was deliberately making himself look bad to defend the player from criticism.