Dad defends viral video of his 4-year-old son running beside his SUV

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by Tiffany Craig / KHOU 11 News

khou.com

Posted on December 20, 2013 at 11:27 PM

Updated Friday, Dec 20 at 11:54 PM

WILLIS, Texas -- The father behind a viral video that shows a little boy running next to a vehicle is speaking out.

In the video, you hear a man with a thick southern accent telling the small child to run.

"You're in football training," he said. "This is how we train for football. Daddy drives and you run."

That dad is Brandon Yates. He and his family live in Willis.

"You don't exactly fit the stereotype that we were all picturing," said KHOU reporter Tiffany Craig.

"No, that's one of the main reasons I wanted to get my story out there," replied Yates. "It was just a playful moment between a father and a son."

The 26-year old dad posted the video of 4-year old Clay Yates on Facebook for friends in September.

As the video goes on, Yates is pushing his son harder.

"Come on, faster," he tells the boy.

"I'm going faster again," replied Clay.

"Come on, I don't want to hear your excuses" said dad.

The video of little Clay has since spread around the world. Yates said some people loved it.

"A lot of people are taking jabs because the Texans are 2 and 11 saying that kid has a chance to play for the Texans," said Yates. "I got a call saying I should be a special teams coach for the Texans."

But others were outraged. They called him the worst dad in the world, a child abuser and Yates even got online death threats.

"My grandmother always said that everybody probably heard which is don't judge a book by its cover," Yates told us. "Unfortunately, the cover was kind of hidden because I was behind the wheel."

Clay loves football and as a lesson for repeatedly unbuckling his car seat, dad put the little boy out on his grandparent’s private road in New Caney.

It turned into pretend football training.

In the video you hear dad saying, "you want to play for the Texans or Cowboys. If you want to play for the Cowboys you better pick that [expletive] up."

At one point, the little boy stops and grabs his side.

"I don't want to hear no excuses, run," he said in the video.

Clay is an only child and after a visit with his family, he's a little spoiled too. That might explain why his mom, Samantha Yates was stunned by the comments.

"Clay is not in any danger," said Samantha. "He's not hurting. We don't abuse him or anything like that."

The video ends with a final turn into the driveway. Dad in the SUV driving right behind Clay in his Crocs.

"Run or I'm going to run your [expletive] over," said Yates. "Better hurry up! That's what I thought. You better grab another gear."

Yates admitted that he never expected the backlash and will think twice before posting another video.

"Let’s just say I won't be sharing anymore Facebook videos of my son doing any football training in Crocs," he said. "Next time, I'll put him in a pair of tennis shoes and I'll be running beside him or something."

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