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Lawsuit Filed Against Coach, School District

Volleyball Coach Todd Gober

By Pamela Rensing
www.heraldpubs.com

MASCOUTAH – A 55-page lawsuit was filed in Illinois federal court on Wednesday, Aug. 24, against a Mascoutah volleyball coach and the Mascoutah School District.
The lawsuit states that head volleyball coach Todd Gober subjected the team to “demoralizing and degrading” activities. The lawsuit was filed by Brooke Junker, a May 2022 MHS graduate and former captain of the volleyball team. She states the Gober and the School District violated her civil rights and discriminated against her.
According to the lawsuit, players were subjected to punishment after scrimmage games that included:
• “Spanking Machine” – The girls on the winning team stood in a line with their legs spread apart. The girls on the losing team must crawl through the leg of the girls on the winning team and permit those standing to slap the buttock of those crawling, at times hard enough to leave hand-shaped mark on the buttocks.
• “Kill the Squirrel” – The girls on the losing team are lined up on a wall. The winning team serve volleyballs at the losers and attempt to hit them. The losers cannot leave the wall until they are hit.
• “Seal Barks” – The girls on the losing team must lay on their stomachs and bark like seals.
• “Donkey Kicks” – The girls on the losing team must crawl around like donkeys, kick their feet so they hit their own buttocks a certain number of times, and make “hee-haw” sounds.
The lawsuit states that Gober required the girls to participate in an obstacle course race where they were partnered up. One partner was blindfolded, and the other partner attempts to lead them through a maze of set mouse traps without using words such as “forward,” “backward,” “left,” or “right.”
At the end of the obstacle course, participants who did not perform well were required to eat sardines, radishes, and other food while still blindfolded.
On Friday, Aug. 26, the lawsuit states that the coach forced the team to line up after a game and face the spectators in the stands while screaming at the girls, telling them they had “let down their fans.”
Junker and three other seniors separately met with a Mascoutah school counselor, voicing concerns about how they were treated.
The Counselor reported the incident to Mascoutah Athletic Director Scott Battas.
In the lawsuit, Junker said Gober “scolded the four seniors for approximately 45 minutes, said they had ‘betrayed’ him by speaking to a counselor, said they were not to see or speak to a counselor, and the seniors were not allowed to participate in practice that day.”
On Monday, Aug. 30, Gober alledgedly met again with the four seniors privately. Their “Team Captain” status was removed, and Gober said there would be no captains in 2021-2022 volleyball season.
Brooke Junker, is the daughter of Jeff and Beth Junker. Jeff Junker is the former assistant principal at Mascoutah High School. He retired this summer. According to the lawsuit, the parents tried to intervene on behalf of their daughter.
The lawsuit states that Junker is seeking damages in excess of $500,000 She is represented by Mathis, Marifian & Richter Ltd of Belleville.
Todd Gober is President/CEO at First Federal Savings Bank of Mascoutah.

152 Comments

  1. Anonymous on September 8, 2022 at 3:14 pm

    So, the parents, one of which was the assistant principle of the school, was unable to do anything? The assistant principle of the school was unable to bring these activities and behavior to an end? The athletic director wasn’t able to stop it? Makes me wonder how many other students in that school were disrespected and the assistant principle was unable to make a difference. Who’s looking out for the kids????

  2. Anonymous on August 31, 2022 at 5:24 pm

    This thread is disgusting and disheartening. A CHILD IS A CHILD. PERIOD. HE WAS IN A POSITION OF AUTHORITY.
    In this day and age those drills are completely inappropriate. Ever consider what the athlete was thinking?!? Like maybe i shouldn’t say anything, maybe if i do, my friends will hate me, if my coach gets in trouble what are the repercussions? So many things could have been going through her head as to why this didn’t come out sooner. REGARDLESS SHE IS A MINOR, his coaching
    methods are inappropriate and any coach who continued to do this must think he’s above the law because no one in their right mind would continue this behavior.
    Administration is to blame for not handling this if they had knowledge. I’m appalled at some of these responses about scholarships and so forth. That’s asinine. No family wants to be publicly go through this. Put yourself in their shoes. What if that was your daughter? Shame on some of you.
    On the coaches behalf, innocent until proven guilty. Pretty sure there in an entire team that can back up these allegations, it’s not just one person singled out. She just finally had the support to come forward.

    • Anonymous on September 3, 2022 at 9:35 am

      And none of these activities helped improve skills or play. Purely humiliating.

      • Anonymous on September 4, 2022 at 4:25 pm

        Wow. You seem pretty passionate about Mascoutah Volleyball. Hope to see you at the next home game!

  3. Anonymous on August 31, 2022 at 1:04 pm

    Todd is the best coach to ever walk in to Mascoutah’s volleyball program. His winning record says it all, along with the number of players to leave and play at a collegiate level. Mascoutah volleyball was at a complete standstill before him.

    As for those drills they were along far before he was coaching at Mascoutah. I remember doing some of those in Grade School at practice with another coach.

    • Anonymous on August 31, 2022 at 2:03 pm

      So you are prioritizing a winning record over the protection of our children? That’s right winning a high school volleyball game is more important than the mental health of our children. We are lucky there have been no suicides. Shame on you. When was the last time a volleyball player continued on to the collegiate level? Many years ago

    • Anonymous on August 31, 2022 at 5:51 pm

      As a social worker, I read this and am horrified for these girls. The misappropriation of “authority” not only shows in his “coaching” but it’s a vast reflection of how behind the district remains if this is the standard or training athletic ability. Whether he came up with these so called “drills” or not, there are far more sophisticated and appropriate ways to “coach.” How repulsive. Shame on all of you.

      • Anonymous on September 1, 2022 at 9:01 pm

        As a social worker you should know that not all allegations are true. You should know better than to convict someone in the court of public opinion without all the facts. I’m glad you weren’t a social worker involved in my divorce since all of the allegations made by my ex wife were completely unfounded.

    • Anonymous on September 5, 2022 at 4:13 pm

      “His winning record”: 2021-2022 (26-11) 70%, 20-21 (12-4) 75%, 19-20 (16-20) 44%, 18-19 (12-24) 33%, 17-18 (15-21) 42%, 16-17 (31-9) 78%, 15-16 (34-8) 81%, 14-15 (29-6) 83%. Source – Max Preps.
      Conference Rank out of 6 teams: 2021-2022, 2nd each year, 18-20 3rd place, 14/15-17 1st.
      “Number of players to leave and play at the collegiate level.” What player since the state winning 2016-2017 team? Anyone with a scholarship? Just this young lady correct?
      What’s not at a standstill is the dedicated parents offering CLUB opportunities to the athletes. The athletes are putting in the work outside Mascoutah to make it happen.

  4. Anonymous on August 31, 2022 at 12:23 pm

    I am an objective bystander who does Not live in your school district but am compelled to comment which many of you may not approve of. Oh well, here goes, as the mother of two daughters who were both active on sports, I would totally flip out if this happened at our school! I have worked in the school setting for over 12 years and guarantee if a teacher were accused of such allegations there would be a thorough investigation ! I cannot believe parents are so caught up in sports/winning they would attack a student this way. What a shameful role model and I applaud the student who had the self worth to realize how wrong this type of Harassment is allowed. I do NOT care how GOOD a coach might be, Wrong Is Wrong!!!

    • Anonymous on August 31, 2022 at 8:49 pm

      Psssstt…. You aren’t being objective. Wait for the facts to come out.

    • Anonymous on September 1, 2022 at 8:59 pm

      There was an investigation by the administration. But nice of you to convict him without any knowledge of what actually happened.

      • Anonymous on September 5, 2022 at 4:19 pm

        Anticipating seeing all the emails, texts and notes from this investigation. From administration, athletic director, coach, coach’s wife and asst. coach working at the high school as librarian. Let’s see how this investigation was handled. Transparency. Let’s see it. How was this handled? How many athletes have left the program during his reign? How many volleyball players went to a new sport? This should have been investigated far before this was brought to the courts. What other head varsity coach for Mascoutah is not a teacher/employee of the district?

    • Anonymous on September 5, 2022 at 5:37 pm

      Agreed if it was a teacher it would have been handled completely different. If this had been alleged about a teacher, well a teacher isn’t in control of all the districts financials. The local CEO of the financial institution and a coach. Is it possible
      the regard towards the athletes and the program were second to self serving priorities of adults?
      Investigation handled internally, aren’t they all friends? Personal and professional lines mingled making the adults the priority over the well being of the female athletes. Transparency. Looking forward to seeing how this unfolds in front of a judge.

  5. Anonymous on August 31, 2022 at 10:35 am

    I’m thinking the lawsuit was filed after Ms. Brooke didn’t get a scholarship. 4 years of this abuse and she just files…. Shame on Mr. Junker!!!

    • Anonymous on August 31, 2022 at 2:01 pm

      I doubt this is the case. Lawsuits like this take months and months to develop. The article states that this is 55 pages long. This definitely was in the works for a while so I don’t think your assumption is accurate. Regardless of if she had a scholarship or not, are these actions okay? I definitely think they are still inappropriate.

      • Anonymous on August 31, 2022 at 4:58 pm

        Just wait for the facts and truth to come out, it might surprise us ALL!! I don’t condone this behavior however I’m smart enough to know there’s two sides to every story. I find it hard to believe her father let this happen for FOUR YEARS!!

  6. Anonymous on August 30, 2022 at 9:18 pm

    Why would any parent of a child that is emotionally unstable allow them to continue playing if it was that bad?? As a parent, why in the world would have your unstable daughter file a lawsuit… wait until the truth comes out. Brooke nor her parents will never show their faces in Mascoutah.

  7. Anonymous on August 30, 2022 at 1:28 pm

    No need to assassinate anyone’s character yet. Just let each person’s actions or inactions speak for themselves.

    The fact that the proper steps of reporting this type of behavior did not resolve the issue, points to signs of bigger issues within the department.

    Eventually the truth will come out through the court system.

    In the mean time, with allegations of any kind of abuse (physical, verbal, emotional) against a minor, the coach should be placed on indefinite leave until the AD and school board determines if any disciplinary action is warranted.

    • Anonymous on August 30, 2022 at 8:39 pm

      What if that was already done? Seems like just a way to get back at a coach you don’t like if automatic suspension

  8. Anonymous on August 30, 2022 at 12:29 pm

    My kids have played multiple sports – both school and club, with the Gobers as coaches. Yes, he is tough and a winning coach. The best coach either of my kids ever had was the same – tough and a winner, but on the other hand he was the direct opposite-tough but NEVER degrading. Supportive but demanded 110% from the team and did not let them slack. I know parents and players have been upset with the Gobers’ methods for years and perhaps they have no place coaching teenage girls in this day & age. That said, parents also have the responsibility to pull their kids out of what they see as abusive situations.

    • Anonymous on August 30, 2022 at 4:44 pm

      If these allegations are true, can someone explain to me how these drills help improve your chances of winning of volleyball game? Like how does smacking rear ends and beaning players and kicking like a donkey improve your pass, dig, set, serving and kill skills? I can’t imagine humiliation suddenly gives you the ability to hit/dig/set the ball better…

    • Anonymous on August 31, 2022 at 9:36 am

      To clarify-multiple sports but only with the Gobers as coaches in volleyball. Many other coaches in different sports. Everyone has their own methods but the coach that got the best results did not use degradation to achieve them.

  9. Anonymous on August 30, 2022 at 12:22 pm

    If I were her college coach I would be very concerned by all of this. Next you know she sits out one game and you have a lawsuit against yourself in a heartbeat.

  10. Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 7:20 pm

    I’m a former player for O’Fallon Township. I have heard so many rumors about his abusive behavior. I remember being at an Edwardsville tournament and seeing him degrading these girls first-hand. I also coached Brooke when she was in 8th grade. I trust her completely.

  11. Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 5:22 pm

    This article is so full of slander against the coach its not funny. There are two sides to every story and typical of the liberal media to put the coach on trial in a court of public opinion. Also too, your destroying his lively hood by pointing out his employer which is none of our concern. Not saying the way he coached was the right way, but when your a coach you have to be passionate about your sport and you might say and do some things in the heat of emotion that could be taken out of context. Yes some of his discipline tactics were a little on the odd side, but taking a step or 2 back from the subject and look to see if any players got physically damaged from him. If not, them i think this lawsuit is frivolous and a waste of time because her feelings got hurt. She needs to toughen up mentally and not take everything that was said to her to heart.

    • Anonymous on August 30, 2022 at 12:07 pm

      Steps were taken about his behavior before the lawsuit but were not taken seriously; if the school had been doing its job, it would have been handled without a lawsuit. But sometimes, folk won’t stop their behavior until it hits their pocketbook.

  12. Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 5:02 pm

    What we are ultimately dealing with here is a lawsuit because a teenage girl got her feelings hurt.
    It seems that many here need a reminder that teenage girls are not exactly the most emotionally stable creatures on the planet. A great many other girls have gone through Gober’s drills and never had a problem, but a few didn’t like it and now want to destroy the man over this. Perhaps competitive sports aren’t for such girls and they should stick to something a little less offensive.

    • Anonymous on August 30, 2022 at 12:30 pm

      Got her feelings hurt? Honey, this is beyond hurting someone’s feelings. This is verbal abuse AT MINIMUM. Read the comments from others who witnessed his behavior. Read the STL Today comments from other coaches how UNACCEPTABLE this is. It’s one thing for someone to be thin skinned. It’s another thing entirely to verbally abuse, humiliate, and PROMOTE physical abuse by fellow teammates.

  13. Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 3:39 pm

    I wish Mascoutah District let ALL children (that are interested) play in sports at the school. All this trying out, not making it, etc. tears our children down no matter what age! We need to build them up! This world is way to harsh for these children that do not make the teams at the school to be let down so easily.

    • Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 3:52 pm

      Yep everyone wins and life is always fair. Are you going to step up and coach, provide equipment/facilities, etc? Life is not always fair and kids need to learn that sooner than later

    • Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 6:18 pm

      That’s completely unrealistic!

    • Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 6:20 pm

      Please tell me you’re joking. You’d be the first parent to complain when Mascoutah gets its teeth kicked in by Highland or Triad.

    • Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 8:16 pm

      My son tried out for middle school baseball, did not make it, but the select baseball players made it, but those boys were out at tryouts

    • Anonymous on August 30, 2022 at 6:52 am

      And give each kid orange slices and a trophy after every game! Come on, you can’t be serious.

    • Anonymous on August 30, 2022 at 7:47 am

      Not everyone in life gets a trophy. If you don’t make the team then spend the next year working on getting better. Success isn’t handed to a person in life, it’s earned.

    • Anonymous on August 31, 2022 at 9:39 am

      If you want kids to be able to play all the sports, move somewhere like Lebanon. Sometimes they’re begging kids to play to make a team.

  14. Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 9:27 am

    Let me add that Jeff Junker was an administrator at the high school his daughter was playing volleyball when the alleged abuse was happening!! He was there! In house. He waited until he retired to file a lawsuit?! He worked side by side Scott battas and the other administrators during this time and he waited until after his retirement to file a lawsuit? What a joke. He should never step foot in mascoutah again. The place that cut his paycheck for over 30 years and was loyal to him. Such a shame.

    • Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 11:55 am

      Mr. Junker didn’t file the lawsuit. He probably retired because it was political, he didn’t agree with how the situation was handled, and was probably pressured to play along.

      • Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 5:43 pm

        he probably retired because all of his children have graduated there and there was no use for him being there

    • Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 2:03 pm

      You must not know how legal matters like this work, he was not the AD or superintendent who actually make decisions, as seen in the St. Louis Dispatch article he brought the matters up but they were not seriously investigated

      • Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 3:52 pm

        Then go public if that concerned about his daughter

    • Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 5:24 pm

      Hasn’t Junker been there for year and years? He worked and was likely loyal to this district for so many years and even was a coach himself when I went to school. I have known him to be a stand up guy and I can’t imagine he would take action like this without trying to resolve the issue first. From reading the Stl article it sounded like they had tried to figure out the issue for months before getting to this point. Imagine working at the same school for so many years and the district and your coworkers can’t take your opinion seriously that it gets to this level. I sure would be hurt if I was him.

  15. Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 11:33 pm

    The key to winning games is practices that focus on skills development and team performance. Activities that require team members to assault, attack, and humiliate each other in fear of retaliation or to gain favor is by definition ABUSE! If you disagree, you are either a perpetrator, bystander or victim. This is an adult, a grown man who forbid these girls from talking to other adults about their concerns and abusive experiences. If he had nothing to hide or fear, then he wouldn’t care who they talked to. Any adult that knew this happened is complicit and has loss sight of their responsibilities. This generation is one of the most resilient generations ever. If the world shut down while you were in school, you were stuck at home with parents who were barely hanging on to their jobs, you had to learn in isolation, play your heart out while playing in masks, no graduation, no prom all while the world is divided by politics and dying from disease – don’t tell me these kids are soft. Some of you couldn’t walk a mile in their shoes. If this coach and the adults who were aware of his behavior think his actions reflect the values and expectations of a leader, then it’s no wonder why he’s still coaching – it’s called collusion. Unchecked control becomes systemic abuse. Silence is a form of acceptance too.

    • Anonymous on August 30, 2022 at 1:13 am

      wow. the fact that you said “assault, ATTACK, and humiliate” and calling it abuse. the fact that most of these comments are by people who don’t know Todd at all or personally OR EVEN ONE OF HIS PLAYERS is ridiculous. you may also know his WIFE is also the volleyball coach and who practices with him along with 2- 3 other female coaches. Also more than half of the time he would gather the winning team to see what they thought their punishment should be. these were all fun and games, never in the time I played no one cried about this and everyone thought it was funny and fun. the only reason I no longer play is personal reason but the one filing the lawsuit was one of the favorite on the because of her daddy I think because she was not super super great.

  16. Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 10:36 pm

    For those of you that read an article and assume truth to it all-you are fools! There are always two sides to every story. Instead of assuming guilt by the admin, the A.D. and the coach you should ask other families that were involved last year and currently with the HS volleyball program what they think. There is a ton of support for Todd Gober with most of that support being people that don’t post on crap like this.

    • Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 4:09 pm

      As adults we should not only consider Gober’s feelings but must take not of how the players feel. They will all now experience a lifetime of never feeling enough. If at school we suppository have zero tolerance for bullying or hitting then why is this type of behavior even allowed. Hitting or slapping team mates bottoms is not part of this policy. To say this is right and the girls are soft shame on anyone who does. I also want to say that no money in the world will ever solve or fix this situation. So not sure why any money is sought after. This single suit will tear this town down and it’s already happening. I encourage every player and patent friends etc that know or have seen these practices first hand to not remain silent. This is abuse whether it was meant that way or not. I know first hand how things get swept under rug by our school district in sports and otherwise.

  17. Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 10:20 pm

    Hopefully this isn’t true and mr gober and mr Battas counter sue and file a defamation suit not only against the junkers but get all the ip addresses from the herald for the some of the idiot responses on here! Now that would be funny. Hopefully this goes “to trial” so both sides would come out. I would be amazed if the school district legal team has not been involved with this from an early stage of the investigation.

  18. Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 6:15 pm

    lmao get him outta there

  19. Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 5:02 pm

    Shame on the Mascoutah Herald for allowing this type of debate that directly and negatively impacts hard working individuals and good people in our community. You’re enabling hate here. You should take this board down. It’s not creating anything but hate and bullying. Post news- sure. But don’t allow people to spread hate.

    • Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 1:41 pm

      Congrats to Mascoutah Herald for publishing an article in the town for the community to be able to voice their opinions and not let this type of issue be swept under the rug. It’s time for the athletic department to answer for these “rumors” that have been circulating for years.

    • Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 8:37 pm

      Smartest statement I’ve ever seen on hear. Shame on the Herald for having this forum!

  20. Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 4:51 pm

    As a former volleyball player who played with her I can say that she would always get upset when taken out or when she did not get her way. She would always be the first to want to play games on & off the court, she would routinely show that she only cared about her & her success on the court. Not only would she have major attitude with Gober when he would take her out but she never cared about how her attitude impacted other players & brought them down as well because it was so depressing. As a player that also played these games they were fun and meant to be fun, I can say I witnessed her even spiking the hardest at players & wanted to do these drills. Whenever her team didn’t win when scrimmaging she would have the worst attitude & almost cry because she thought it was unfair. If she thought these drills were demoralizing then why did she routinely want to participate in them? Gober is a great coach & has taught me many life lessons when I was a player for him, seems like her parents always let things slide if she can’t handle being told that she actually did something wrong. If all these players hated him so much then why did they stay on the team all four years? Most players would get upset & mad because he wouldn’t play them simply because they did not contribute to the winning of the team. Anyone that plays sports knows the only reason they hate their coach is because they aren’t good & don’t get playing time.

    • Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 2:06 pm

      I feel sorry for the young girls that did play these games and didn’t recognize the true intent of them. Admitting you did these drills that were made up of hazing activities including consuming distateful food does not increase volleyball skills, it is made to embarrass the individuals. Just because you believe they were okay, does not mean they were.

      • Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 3:53 pm

        What was the true intent? You can read minds? Interesting

  21. Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 3:48 pm

    It’s crazy people are defending a grown man watching young girls smack eachother’s buttock. That’s not right in any capacity

  22. Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 2:15 pm

    What a bunch of snowflakes… this is nothing more than a Junker cash grab. Guess retirement isn’t paying well enough eh??

    • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 3:36 pm

      Did you actually read the article? It’s appalling what those young girls went through. Hopefully you do not have children of your own.

    • Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 1:02 am

      The coach and the school failed these athletes. Having the guts to file a lawsuit and go public to rectify this for future athletes is justified. Four complainants sharing $500,000, plus lawyers fees and taxes really isn’t that much of a “cash grab”.

    • Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 5:51 am

      “Regardless of the outcome of these allegations its far past time that we think “good coaching” is loud and punitive. Too many coaches at all levels hide their lack of ability with being loud and punishing behaviors.”

  23. Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 11:44 am

    Todd is a very devoted man – devoted to the volleyball, devoted to his family, and he has a strong personality and a desire to pull the best out of everyone.
    Some people handle that just fine and come out better for it.
    But more and more people nowadays can’t handle any kind of pressure and get their feelings hurt easily.
    What a shame. If you can’t handle the pressure, then join a recreational league – not a competitive one.

    • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 2:43 pm

      We should always throw volleyballs at individuals. We can hit the individual in the head, hopefully score a concussion, and only hope C.T.E. sets in at a young age. Brilliant idea.

  24. Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 10:21 am

    As a former player of Todd (within the past 4 years) everything outlined in this article is 100% true. I’ve endured these humiliation tactics multiple times. Even as early as age 12 when I started going to the volleyball camps. It’s appalling that some people who have never even had children in the program want to say all the statements are made up. I wish you guys could have been in the gym with us three years ago as we had to have volleyballs nailed at our bodies from five feet away or when we forcefully had to have out butts smacked over and over. Todd does not deserve to be a coach or represent Mascoutah in any way.

    • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 4:37 pm

      I’m so sorry you had to endure all that just to be able to play a sport. Besides the pain, there’s plenty of humiliation that goes with the stories told here. This makes me think of the poor volleyball player that committed suicide. I can’t help but wonder if there’s any correlation after reading some of the comments in these articles. None of these actions are normal. None. And should never be accepted as such by ANY rational adult.

    • Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 8:22 pm

      Why did you continue to play for him. 12 years through high school?

      • Anonymous on August 30, 2022 at 9:20 am

        Because volleyball was my entire world at the time. I played year round between club and school. But I quit school because of him.

    • Anonymous on August 30, 2022 at 3:52 pm

      I am so sorry you were put through this. Nothing about this is ok. Don’t let the comments get to you.

  25. Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 8:52 am

    If we take a look at this from a standpoint that does not include people’s intentions, nor if SOME players thought these things were “fun,” and we simply look at the things that happened (confirmed by the multiple players on here stating all these drills were done) … at the end of the day, these things are not appropriate. As a GROWN MAN who is responsible for TEENAGE GIRLS, there’s more than one thing wrong here. Tough coaching and tough love are ABSOLUTELY a necessity to cultivate a truly competitive culture (I was all-conference myself.. so I get it.) However, there is a line, and that line was way more than crossed here – multiple times. SOME players thinking these things were “fun” is not enough to justify these actions. At the end of the day, he is the adult, and needed to draw the line between appropriate and inappropriate, which he failed to do. According to the Post, these complaints were brought up multiple times. Shame on the Administration for allowing these things to continue.

    Regardless of if we think this is a money grab by the Junkers or whatever else, the facts remain at the end of the day that this coach has crossed MANY lines.

    Those of you that support him can be upset all you like, but he is wrong.

    • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 1:33 pm

      “… regardless if a money grab by the Junkers or whatever else… “ I know they tried and tried to have the school do the right thing. A lawyer won’t represent for an apology or for a coach to be dismissed.

    • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 2:05 pm

      Are you sure these are facts? You talk as if guilty before hearing both sides. Glad our justice system is not up to you

      • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 6:37 pm

        I’m betting based upon the girls who DO support him stating these things happened, in fact confirms these things happened. Regardless of if some thought they were fun or not, still not appropriate.

        Glad the responsibility of teaching reading comprehension is not up to you. 🙂

  26. Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 7:22 pm

    I am requesting the School Board to hold an emergency meeting immediately. I am requesting the School Board exercise the option to put the following individuals on Administrative Leave. The Superintendent, the Principal, the Assistant Principal, and the Athletic Director until a complete investigation is completed. If, and I say IF the above mentioned individuals knew about the alleged conduct and did nothing, their teaching certification should be removed permanently. I also hope an internal investigation is completed throughout all of District 19 to ensure this is an isolated incident. The Athletic Director in my opinion should offer up his resignation regardless. It was his team and his responsibility to protect the students. I am thoroughly disgusted anyone was treated in this manner. I urge the School Board to act swiftly.

    • Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 8:50 pm

      And take away retirement for the principal who was there and is now retired too right? Start the lynch mob

    • Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 9:25 pm

      Agreed

    • Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 10:19 pm

      Who are you that thinks you know anything? Scott Battas is the best thing that ever happened to the Mascoutah Sports program. He bleeds our school and town. People like you are who are ruining anything good in society. The time and love people like Scott put in is everything that embodies leadership. Sit back and judge why don’t you. It makes me sick to even have to post to defend a person as honorable as Scott.

      • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 8:25 am

        Apparently our legal system has changed to presume guilty until proven innocent Pretty scared

      • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 9:44 am

        Scott Battas is one of the biggest problems in this whole situation. To say otherwise is complete ignorance. Hazing is ILLEGAL, and he sat back and let it happen. Completely unacceptable. He is about sponsorships, kick backs, and glory, not about the students.

        • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 8:32 pm

          If you think Scott Battas is the problem, then you need to pull your head out of your ass and look at the culture and improvements in our athletic department as a whole. I’m not an anonymous commenter hiding behind my keyboard. My name is Chris Norwood and I’m a huge supporter of Scott Battas and Todd Gober

      • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 12:56 pm

        Hash Tag EAT:

        ENABLE
        ATTACK
        TERRORIZE

      • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 1:04 pm

        I really hope he tried to step in and stop what allegedly took place.

      • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 2:59 pm

        Amen!!! People like this are the problem in this world today. They bleed bitterness and hate!

      • Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 3:38 pm

        My response to your comment is I coached Mr. Battas when he was in school. He worked his tail off, gave 110 percent, and had the drive you don’t find from many. I am in no way shape or form attacking his character if you go back and read my post. I said “IF” the allegations are true and nobody stepped in to put an end to it, he should step down. He is the captain of the ship and must take responsibility in good times and in bad. I am not attacking his character as a human being. If and I said “IF” the allegations are true he should go down with the ship just as any captain would do.

        I hope for his sake he did try to step in and stop this alleged behavior. He is a man of great character. Who knows, maybe he did and was stonewalled by his Superiors. I hope this case does make it to court so we all find out the truth.

    • Anonymous on August 30, 2022 at 5:16 pm

      Agreed! All district employees involved should be held responsible if this is true and they knew about it while doing nothing. If this is really what happened, all property tax payers who support this district should be upset as it will be us paying for the misconduct. Enough is enough. There should be zero tolerance for any of this type of behavior.

  27. Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 5:57 pm

    As a former player for Todd, I will say he is a huge part of me succeeding. These allegations were not my experience at all. We did these exact same drills and it was fun. It was a great way to bond with teammates and push them to succeed. Todd not only helps everyone’s skills, but he pushes you to succeed at a higher level. If you’re not a passionate coach then what kind of coach are you? There’s always more to a story.

    • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 9:59 am

      Exact same drills and they were fun? You must have always been on the giving side of the humiliation… how is that team building? My step daughter went to college on full paid volleyball scholarships at a major university and NEVER had coaches like this. These drills sound more like college hazing than team building. I hope the entire story DOES come out. I’m sure this young ladies attorneys are watching these comments and enjoying the admissions from former players of such drills. Their evidence is being handed right to them. 😉

  28. Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 5:03 pm

    This is awful and I understand the lawsuit. It is truly sad how situations of this sort are not taken seriously by the MHS school district. We should do better for our children!

  29. Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 4:48 pm

    As a former player of Todd Gobers for many years for a select team Southern Heat, I firmly believe this is an inaccurate representation of Todd Gober as a coach. He was a tough coach undoubtedly, but he taught to win. His coaching taught true discipline while preparing us all to be physically and mentally strong on and off the court. I understand that as a young female tough drills and practices may seem unfair at times as you are continuously pushing your body and skills to the limit, but volleyball is a physically demanding sport that takes a mental toll if you are not prepared. Todd Gober did an excellent job coaching in my opinion and if I had the option, I would do it again in a heart beat.

    Todd did not have to devote his free time to be a coach, but I do appreciate the time and effort he put into coaching for so many years. I hope my daughter has the love for the game as I did for so many years, and I pray she has a coach like Todd to teach her.

    • Anonymous on August 30, 2022 at 11:06 am

      One of the best coaches i have ever played for!!

  30. Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 4:35 pm

    Funny how people who really do not know anything of the situation can come on here and comment. Our society has truly changed to guilty until proven innocent instead of the other way around. Truths come out and as of right now this a one sided story

    • Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 10:17 pm

      Did he resign? If so, I believe it speaks volumes.

      • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 2:07 pm

        No he has not resigned.

  31. Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 4:07 pm

    This is really a sad story. And I would assume the AD would be aware of the circumstances. Seems to me football is his game. We see or hear nothing of any of the other sports! Big cross country event in town this morning! Not a peep! Sorry these girls had to endure this behavior!

    • Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 5:00 pm

      Your comment just shows how closed minded you are. The AD posts so much about pretty much all the sports. Just do a quick search on Facebook

    • Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 5:26 pm

      Your going to try to convince the public that the school board members, especially the president who claims he knows everything that’s happening within all programs good, or bad. The superintendent seen this was happening and failed to react. Shocker it’s not only volleyball, it’s all sports and it’s been going on for years. Here comes the flood gate of lawsuits.

    • Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 7:45 pm

      The Athletic Director is too busy

    • Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 7:47 pm

      THis is incredibly ridiculous. Do you follow his twitter. Just in last few days he ahs tweeted about volleyball, cross country, band, dance, cheer, soccer, and others. I have never seen an AD care more about more kids or programs. You clearly do not know that young man, nor care to. He is passionate about this school and community. It’s ok to not love these allegations, but to blame someone who makes this town better? Please.

      • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 2:07 pm

        It doesn’t matter how much one posts for the public. He is the person in charge of the athletics department and the coaching staff. He 100% failed to protect the athletes and students of the school district in this situation. The coach was never suspended, or reprimanded, at any point during an “investigation.” Instead the students were punished even more. Battas needs to accept his role in this and the community needs to take their rose colored glasses off the man who wants fame for himself and is failing in the most important aspects of the job as an athletic director.

        • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 3:06 pm

          You have no idea! Fame? Scott battas could be coaching at a collegiate level TODAY (making way more money!) if he wanted to but he chooses this school and this community because his heart is here. He puts his heart in everything he does for this town. You’ll never meet a more passionate and genuine person. Ever. Let me put my rose colored glasses on for you sir/ma’am because all I see is a jealous bully at this point and I truly like to find the good in everyone.

          • Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 6:46 pm

            How could he be coaching at the collegiate level? He had multiple losing records year after year.



        • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 10:02 pm

          How do you know he wasn’t reprimanded?

    • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 2:57 pm

      I’m sorry Scott battas was front and center at that cross country meet and he posted about how amazing the athletes were on his social media page. He also put countless hours in to make sure the event was successful. No one sees how much that guy sacrifices to make sure the kids at MCHS have an experience they will treasure forever. That guy is world class. He’s the most positive and enthusiastic person you’ll ever meet. Take a page from his book! You all should really get something better to do with your time than bully someone on a platform like a hometown paper. My goodness! Grow up.

    • Anonymous on August 30, 2022 at 9:34 pm

      Are you serious? He posts, promotes, and shows up to work hard for kids at EVERYTHING. Greatest, most dedicated high school AD I’ve ever known.

  32. Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 3:32 pm

    Why did this go on for years and nobody said anything about it. Who is this man and why does he still exist with a position in the community as a bank CEO. Not one parent noticed or known of this going on with their daughter? Unbelievable in todays world.

    • Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 5:01 pm

      If this is true. What if all an exaggeration? But I guess innocent until proven guilty doesn’t exist to you

    • Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 9:16 pm

      Its because this is just a quick money grab for the junker family. Brooke is one to talk about civil injustices when she is known around her school for discriminating against the black community. This is all just for money since daddy retired and shes going off to college.

      • Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 5:45 pm

        It’s enough evidence for a federal indictment and your personal opinion of the Junker family does not mean he didn’t do it.

    • Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 9:24 pm

      It probably was reported several times and swept under the rug. Seriously, it’s taking a federal lawsuit to get this to stop. Who in their right mind tells HS students that they betrayed their own coach because they reported the abuse that man was inflicting on them.

    • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 10:27 am

      Graduated from the high school years ago. Many complaints were brought up about Gober. Seemed like since they were playing well and making it to post season many things were swept under the rug for

  33. Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 3:27 pm

    Not that it’s right( it isn’t) but how much will girls go through during RUSH week to get in a sorority??? Just saying….

    • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 9:50 am

      And it’s called Hazing and it’s illegal

    • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 10:29 am

      Totally true. Tons of lawsuits happening due to things like this happening in sororities and fraternities. Check out the news, happening with a fraternity at Mizzou right now. This behavior is not okay in any environment

    • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 1:56 pm

      You are correct, SOME young college women do go through silly RUSH stuff, but THEY sign up for that knowing it could/will happen. These are high school girls who tried out to play volleyball, not be hazed for a sorority- IF what is stated is true about the allegations….

  34. Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 2:51 pm

    Many complaints about this coach were voiced up to four years before Junker’s complaints. It’s a shame that the school district doesn’t care about any players other than the principal’s daughter. If they would’ve listened to others earlier, hundreds of girls could’ve avoided this abuse. But no, they wait for their daughter to come through and file a lawsuit for $ instead.

    • Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 5:02 pm

      Yep seems more about a money grab than doing what is right.

    • Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 5:54 pm

      Read the article in Stl- they didn’t care about “principals daughter” either. Says the family met, and communicated all issues – were brought to the attention of the AD, admin. Mascoutah decided to keep him. They did a thorough investigation- didn’t ask my daughter anything. Swept under the rug. Imagine the amount of time it takes to file, that this was all done before the principal retired. Can you sue for a coach to lose his job- no.

      • Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 8:33 pm

        If it was so bad and her parents were witnessing her grades and mental health decline, why wasn’t she removed from the team? Why allow your child to continue to go through that? Instead of cutting off the alleged abuse immediate we wait and collect a payout? If proven guilty, maybe Brooke should sue her parents next for misappropriated parenting?

    • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 10:52 am

      Sounds like the school did not care about the principal’s daughter either. If meetings were held with coaches and the AD and things were done to protect the players there would be no lawsuit. The fact that it is taking a former employee to bring up a lawsuit for a coach to be held accountable for inappropriate actions speaks volumes.

  35. Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 2:03 pm

    This has Beth written all over it. The impeccable time is interesting. Why now that her husband is retired and her daughter is graduated. My daughter had Todd over 10 years ago and as a grade school student they did these same exercises and she is not scared. Todd has some great tram bonding activities. Sounds like sour grapes to me.

    • Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 5:59 pm

      For sure. She is an advocate for all- especially kids. Timing- that’s what happens when complaints fall on deaf ears and are unanswered and ignored. This started in August- ask when the school responded. During the season, or right before school ended. Maybe they thought it would go away like all the others who complained. 10 years ago and a grade daughter did these exercise with this coach. That’s team bonding?

    • Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 9:26 pm

      exactly, junkers chance at a fast money grab!

    • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 11:40 am

      As a former teammate of Brookes she was one of the first players to want to do these games at the end of practices. Funny how things changed when she wasn’t as good as others and her captaincy taken away. Her mom was always complaining that her daughter should’ve been playing even though she wasn’t as good as other players.

      • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 3:28 pm

        One word. Money

      • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 7:13 pm

        Is this true? I remember reading in the Herald about her receiving several accolades from the Conference throughout her volleyball career at the high school.

      • Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 8:18 am

        I guess the truth will come out in court. Since you have first hand knowledge, I’m sure you will be witness for coach. The bottom line, in the end, NONE of the “drills” described are acceptable.

        • Anonymous on August 30, 2022 at 5:47 pm

          Exactly. Bottom line is “are these drills and his actions acceptable or not.” To be honest regardless of who he is I would not want to be around or interact with anyone who thought that these actions towards teenage girls are okay.

  36. Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 1:39 pm

    It was a matter of time before someone had had enough. This has been going on for years and everyone was afraid to say something! Good for Ms. Junker for not only standing up for herself but for the rest of the team!

    • Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 5:03 pm

      Should sue her own dad too for not doing anything when he worked at the school

  37. Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 1:21 pm

    A coach is supposed to positive, enthusiastic, supportive, trusting, and respectful while teaching sportsmanship, ethics, integrity, self worth and build confidence in these young athletes. It’s time for him to man up, admit he failed these young women and disgraced himslef , his family and his community. Submit your walking papers now, coach!

    • Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 7:06 pm

      I was a former player of Todd gober and let’s hust say this lawsuit is much needed. He tore up my confidence and some practice me and the other seniors were just standing in the side. We also got our team captain name taken away from us because we called a team meeting and saying how we need to be more positive in practice and saying how we shouldn’t listen to him. And he found out and took our team captain away from all four of us. He also did the same excerises, some people may think it’s tema bonding but it sure of hell didn’t feel that way.

      • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 8:29 am

        If was so bad why did you go public? As team captain you should have done that

        • Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 10:03 am

          The school has known about this issue for years and never did anything about it. We lost half the team in one year because they couldn’t mentally put up with the way he ‘coached’ anymore. Whenever we did speak up we were belittled and humilated even more.

    • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 7:28 am

      Firstly, I’ll let the investigation prove guilt or innocence. Bigger picture here, BUT IF these drill punishments and the screaming of fans at players did in fact happen, why does this kind of behavior seem to be “ok” to do in sports? Has anyone ever heard of a band director subjecting his/her members to something like this when losing a competition? When a note is misplayed? Off key? Or the drama coach? Does he/she do this when a performance is bad? Line or cue missed? Or the scholar bowl coach? Does he/she allow parents/those in attendance to scream at the kids for missing a question? Why do any of these kinds of “drills” seem appropriate for sports? Actions that make a kid feel less than worthy are NEVER ok.

  38. Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 12:41 pm

    If true he needs to go. But also find it a bit off her dad was a principal and didn’t step in. I know not the AD but still. Fishy

    • Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 1:25 pm

      He did. He retired the same year this would’ve been happened. I 100% believe he and the counselors were told to stay quiet about it because that’s the atmosphere/how the high school works. Football team is going great? Everything else is swept under the rug to make sure the athletic department continues to look amazing.

      • Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 5:04 pm

        Glad he has a backbone and did the right thing by staying quiet and let his daughter get hurt. Great dad there

        • Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 10:43 pm

          Read the Stl article. Mentioned all they tried to do. Followed the protocol. Seems like this is for the program, the girls. The ones that left the many the quit. Who’ isn’t a great dad… the men above the “Great Dad” that perpetuated this cycle knowing for years, the problems. The dads that ignored,. Look at the retention of players, seniors that quit their sent kit year to play a new sport. Why wasn’t anyone asking.

  39. Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 12:19 pm

    This guy didn’t even welcome my kid at tryouts because of her involvement in band. Thankfully, she chose wisely!

    • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 4:58 am

      It’s simple, at this level you can’t do both. Come on….your comment is silly.

      • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 3:23 pm

        Plenty of students are running XC while participating in band. You absolutely can and should be encouraged to do both. Nothing “silly” about raising a well-rounded kid.

      • Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 2:15 pm

        A friend of mine played soccer and band at the same time. It can be done. The statement is not silly.

  40. Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 11:45 am

    I’m a former volleyball player of Todd Gobers and this lawsuit doesn’t surprise me one bit. Several of my teammates and I were subjected to similar treatment including required team surveys that forced us to stack rank each other on things like “most likely to break team rules” and other negative statements which only pitted girls against each other. This guy thought he was a sports psychologist of some kind and he perpetuated unnecessary drama.

    • Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 12:17 pm

      I was a former player of Todd Gober as well. Clearly he hasn’t changed one bit! I had to do every single one of these drills mentioned within the article. He does verbally abuse his players and thinks he knows every single thing about volleyball. I was absolutely TERRIFIED going into practice sometimes. Girls would often leave crying in pain as did I. Reading this broke my heart, I truly feel so bad for all these girls and that this wasn’t brought up sooner.

    • Anonymous on August 27, 2022 at 8:54 pm

      For those of you posting anonymous. It is easy to hide behind a screen. Put your name with your comments. I 100 percent back Todd Gober. My name is Dan Underwood. My phone number 618-581-0458. My email address is s.jaxfan@gmail.com. If you have any questions feel free to reach out. Our daughter plays in the program and he was my wifes college coach. We believe in him completely.

      • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 9:58 am

        Mr. Underwood, as a teacher of the school district, who fails all his own students year in and year out, you should be one to remain anonymous. When you figure out how to stay off your cell phone during class hours and start actually teaching kids how to play games and sports in PE, then your comments might mean something.

        • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 1:07 pm

          Wasn’t Mr. Underwood the High School coach, before Gober? What happened there?

      • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 11:05 am

        It would be nice to put names. Our society doesn’t allow people to express wrong doings without repercussions. Reading everything it seems that is what has happened.
        So these girls received consequences for seeing the counselor from the coach and you approve of that? So to speak out with a name is not as easy as you make it.

        • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 12:39 pm

          I was a former player of his in college. Never have I disliked a coach more. All the allegations are true. He does this stuff. He called several of us “the bad side of the team” while the remaining were the “good side of the team”. He pitted us against each other. We had to take surveys about each other. Then he would come back to us and say half the team doesn’t like you.
          When he got the job in Mascoutah, we posted on some forum like this saying this was a terrible idea for him to coach high school girls. But was immediately deleted. I saw this coming. Sad he has influenced so many impressionable girls negatively over the years. He ruined volleyball for me.

      • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 11:53 am

        Underwood was a terrible HS basketball coach himself and is guilty of many of the same stupid things Todd has done. He’s also very creepy and made many of the girls uncomfortable.

        Underwood proclaiming his allegiance to Todd should be enough evidence that Todd is wrong.

        Should’ve stayed anonymous, bud.

        • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 2:34 pm

          100% agreed!!!

        • Anonymous on August 28, 2022 at 2:35 pm

          You are so right!!!

      • Anonymous on August 29, 2022 at 4:15 pm

        He was my coach in college too, and he was atrocious. Maybe your wife played at BAC? Cause most of this happened while he was coaching at SIUE – and all of us know it.

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