Football player to police: “It felt like a dude hit me”

Oklahoma's football team finished in the top ten this season

OKLAHOMA (CNN) – The coach of the powerhouse University of Oklahoma football team has spoken out for the first time since video was released of a star player punching a woman back in 2014.

Critics say he should have received a harsher punishment, including removal from the team. Stoops says he wanted Mixon to have a chance to redeem himself.

Oklahoma university football coach Bob Stoops is speaking out following the release of a 2014 video showing a player, Joe Mixon, punching a woman. “It was horrible… hated it as much as anybody did”

Stoops held a press conference Wednesday following fresh criticism of his disciplinary actions, from the 2014 incident.

The graphic video, released Friday by Mason’s attorneys, shows the woman, Amelia Monitor, shoving and slapping Mixon. Mixon then lunges and punches her in the head, breaking facial bones.  She’s now suing.

Stoops says he and the university viewed the video two-and-a-half years ago, and criticized the decision to wait until this week to release the video publicly.

At the time, Mixon was suspended from the team and all team activities for one year. He received a one year deferred sentence and served no jail time.

Stoops said, “Fault me if believing that an 18 year old, without prior violent situation whatsoever, in altercation with the wrong reaction that he did, might have the opportunity to move forward to redeem himself.”

During his police interrogation, Mixon says Molitor, and her friends antagonized him. Mixon also says Molitor hit him so hard, he thought he was hit by a man.

Stoops said, “it may be wrong in some eyes to give a guy an opportunity to come back, 2.5 years later it’s fair to say it isn’t enough, and that’s positive in that that’s the way things have gone in the last two and a half years.”

Oklahoma’s football team finished in the top ten this season, with a 10-2 record.