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Ole Miss coach will “always support our players” over decision to kneel during national anthem

Here is what Ole Miss coach Kermit Davis had to say after Wednesday night’s loss to Tennessee about some of his players kneeling during the national anthem before Saturday’s game to protest “hate groups” that players were on campus that they did not like (players also said after the Tennessee game it was a spontaneous act and would not happen again).

On protests this past weekend:

“I always support our players. I know what happened Saturday, it wasn’t about the anthem, it was about what was going on around our campus. We talked to some parents previously, and like I said, when our guys knelt we supported our players. We knew it had nothing to do with anything but the hate groups that were on campus. They had been talking about it for a couple weeks, trying to bring racism and bigotry on our campus, and we’re just going to support our players.”
“I just think that it was about a confederate statue. And that’s what happens in a lot of different places, it was a protest and we didn’t want them here. Our players didn’t want them here, our community didn’t want them here, and they’re from out of state. That was the whole reasoning. I think our team and our administration stuck together, and I was proud of our fan base for coming out tonight and coming to see us.”
On reactions to increased attention to the team…
“I don’t think there were any distractions. These guys handled it well. It was a one-time incident. It happened about 250 yards from our arena right about the time we were tipping against Georgia. So it was a one-time thing and like I said, obviously by the way we played, it wasn’t a distraction at all.”
On whether or not protests divided the team…
“There’s no division on this team. We support each other, we love each other. It’s a great group to come to the gym with every single day. It was a one-time incident, we were together on it. Hate groups came on campus, and that was it. These guys couldn’t have played the way they played (if the team was divided). Terence Davis has been such a good leader, Breein Tyree has been the same, this group is together. We’re going to have a lot more success down the road.”

On the kneeling’s impact…
“You know, I’ve never thought about the change. The main thing was the safety of our students and players here during that day. We love our players and the connection. That didn’t go through my mind. I think the biggest thing is that we’re going to support our players, and they had a right to express their opinions and they did, and we moved on. I’m proud of our players, I’m proud of our fan base. We’re just going to focus on basketball (moving ahead).”

1 comment

  1. I’m in favor of dropping Ole Miss from the conference. If they don’t like this country let them move to another one.

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