The athletic department of Pierce College is investigating head football coach Carlos Woods after a report from The Roundup News, a school publication, revealed that the coach had collected rent money from his players, and allowed four students to briefly live in the team locker room. Jose Cordova, a former player on the team, described a living situation that came as a result of Woods making promises to young recruits before the fall 2018 semester that he just couldn’t keep (emphasis my own):
“Coach Woods told me that I was valid to move to L.A. from Orlando, Florida, and that my housing would be set up with other players coming in and returning athletes,” Cordova said. “Woods told me that it would be four to five players in a three bedroom, and we would all split the bills and each pay $350 for rent – everything included.”
He added that once he came to Pierce, it felt like Woods packed almost the whole team in a condo on De Soto Avenue.
“He promised actual living space, and it ended up being like a camp/jail with how many people were living in that house,” Cordova said. “Lines Woods had crossed would be 30 guys in a three-bedroom and almost half of his recruits wouldn’t pay rent and bills wouldn’t be paid.”
Cordova added that eviction notices began to pile up, indicating that the money that Woods had collected was not being used to pay for housing, which caused players to constantly worry about whether the water and electricity would work, or if their stuff would be thrown out on the lawn due to unpaid rent. The players were ultimately kicked out, and most were left to figure out housing for themselves. Cordova decided to sleep in his car while he figured out where to live, but that situation caused him to miss a mandatory practice and resulted in him getting kicked off the team. Sick of the bullshit, the player confronted Woods over text, to which the coach replied, “I feel it is best we go different directions.”
In case that wasn’t enough proof of just how shitty of a landlord Woods was, a recording that the Roundup obtained featured the coach telling players to shower in school facilities to cut down on utilities costs, and encouraging players to get money from their parents for rent—with the coach offering to make that call himself. According to players who chose to remain anonymous, even after being scammed out of hundreds of dollars, some still chose to take up Woods’s offer to use the locker room as temporary refuge while they cleaned up the mess that their coach had created.
Since the story broke, Pierce College has released the following statement via president Alexis Montevirgin:
“Los Angeles Pierce College has a proud tradition of providing intercollegiate competitive sports opportunities for our students in accordance with the established policies and procedures of the Los Angeles Community College District and the California Community College Athletics Association,” Montevirgen said.
“The health and safety of our students is a primary concern of the College, our Chancellor and the Board of Trustees. Any allegations concerning employee misconduct or issues involving student safety are taken very seriously and will be thoroughly reviewed.”
This was not the first time Woods got in some trouble during his coaching career. Back in 2017, he was placed on leave, along with another coach, for recruiting violations at Gavilan College.