The Detroit Lions are investigating allegations that center Dominic Raiola verbally abused members of the University of Wisconsin Marching Band before last Sunday's game at Lambeau Field in Green Bay.
The controversy started when Zach York, a trumpet player in the UW Marching Band, wrote on Facebook last night about a nasty encounter he and other band members allegedly had with Raiola:
Dominic Raiola is literally the worst person I have ever had the fortune to encounter. After marching down the field awaiting the national anthem, He went off on a verbal tirade, among other things, questioning my sexuality (as a band member) and then continued on to bring my sister and my recently deceased mother into the conversation. After I refused to give him the satisfaction of turning to look at him, he switched targets to a trombone ranting at him calling him overweight and saying he can't play a real sport. After our halftime show, the same fine gentleman called a female member of the band the "c" word.
According to blogger Tom Melton, multiple UW band members heard Raiola denigrating students with the slur "fag" before and during their pregame performance. They also allege that Raiola called the tuba players "fat motherf***ers," similarly fat-shamed a trombone player, and hurled sexually graphic insults about York's sister.
The band members say Raiola's verbal assaults were completely unprovoked.