Beloved basketball coach resigns, 'heartbroken' over Twitter firestorm

A popular New York high school boys basketball coach has resigned amid a swirling controversy over a series of racial tweets that showed up after his team lost a tough playoff game.

Mahopac’s Kevin Downes announced his resignation Friday, saying he was “heartbroken” over the tweets, The Journal News reported.

Eight Mahopac students have been suspended over the offensive tweets, which referred to members of the Mount Vernon High School team as "monkeys."

Mahopac played Mount Vernon in a Section 1 Class AA semifinal Feb. 27 and suffered a bitter defeat, 43-40.

"I did a lot of soul-searching the last two weeks and just felt like the best thing for me to do was to move on," Downes told The Journal News. "I was kind of heartbroken over all the stuff that happened — not just the comments that were made but the 200-plus times those comments were liked, favorited and retweeted (on Twitter). It was tough, and it's been tough on my kids."

Downes, who is 42 and black, graduated from Mahopac in 1989 and coached at the school for seven years.

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