Ole Miss basketball players cause a scene, kneel during anthem over Confederate statues

Politics has found its way onto the collegiate hard court as several members of the University of Mississippi basketball team opted to take part in a show of disrespect by taking a knee during the playing of the national anthem.

The eight Ole Miss players — the school’s team name is the Rebels — were reportedly showing solidarity with a group of protesters opposing a pro-Confederacy rally being held on campus in support of a Confederate statue.

 

Saturday’s rally followed a protest on Friday calling for the removal of the statue that has been on campus for over 100 years as a monument to Confederate soldiers who died during the Civil War

The protest was organized by Students Against Social Injustice, according to WLOX. Another group, Students Over Monuments, took part as well.

“The majority of it was just that we saw one of our teammates doing it and didn’t want him to be alone,” player Breein Tyree told the Associated Press. “We’re just tired of these hate groups coming to our school and portraying our campus like we have these hate groups in our actual school.”

That narrative was repeated by Mississippi head coach Kermit Davis, who supported the players’ antics — Davis said he was not aware that they were going to kneel.

“This was all about the hate groups that came to our community to try spread racism and bigotry,” Davis told reporters at a news conference. “It’s created a lot of tension for our campus. Our players made an emotional decision to show these people they’re not welcome on our campus, and we respect our players’ freedom and ability to choose that.”

That stance runs directly counter to what Davis said at his introduction as Ole Miss’s new head coach a year ago, The Daily Mississippian reported.

“We’re going to be a team that respects the flag and the national anthem. All of those things from culture is what we’re about. It’s who we’re going to be,” Davis claimed at the time.

Having already seen this play out in the NFL, the reaction online was predictable.

While the America-hating hard left is quick to applaud any action that portrays the country in a bad light, average Americans are disgusted with the show of disrespect.

Here’s a sampling of responses from Twitter:

https://twitter.com/WilliLama/status/1099442454904885249

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Tom Tillison

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