Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy has apologized for wearing a One America News shirt, the day after several of his players threatened to boycott the team over it.
“I had a great meeting with our team today,” Gundy said in a video posted on Twitter on Tuesday afternoon. “Our players expressed their feelings as individuals and as team members. They helped me see through their eyes how the t-shirt affected their hearts.
“Once I learned how that network (OAN) felt about Black Lives Matter, I was disgusted and knew it was completely unacceptable to me. I want to apologize to all members of our team, former players and their families for the pain and discomfort that has been caused over the last two days.
“Black lives matter to me. Our players matter to me. These meetings with our team have been eye-opening and will result in positive changes for Oklahoma State football. I sincerely hope the Oklahoma State family near and far will accept my humble apology as we move forward.”
Gundy, who was photographed wearing the shirt during an apparent fishing trip to Lake Texoma, referenced OAN in an April media teleconference as his source of news. Widely considered a far-right media outlet, OAN has been criticized for its handling of protests against racial injustice, with one of its anchors calling Black Lives Matter “a criminal organization.”
Star running back Chuba Hubbard took offense to the shirt, calling Gundy’s actions “insensitive” and “unacceptable” on Twitter on Monday and saying he wouldn’t participate in team activities “until things change.” Many players joined him.
“I spoke out because I am emotionally drained and I’m tired of seeing stuff happening without results or consequences,” Hubbard tweeted Tuesday. “I realize I have a platform to generate change and I am trying my best to use it accordingly.
“I am a young black man that wants change. I want change that will bring a better experience for my black brothers and sisters at Oklahoma State. It’s that simple. Over these next few months I have left at Oklahoma State, I will be working EVERYDAY to bring change to this organization and to the world. I will be supported by my teammates along with people within this organization. To everyone else, trust me when I say that good will come from this.”
Hubbard and Gundy seemed to resolve the issue Monday night, appearing alongside each other in a short video also posted on Twitter. Gundy didn’t apologize then, but Hubbard did, saying he should have confronted his coach privately instead of publicly.
“I was never wrong for saying what I said,” Hubbard tweeted. “I am a man, and I realized I should have went to him as a man face to face rather than on Twitter. That’s my opinion. But I had to hold him accountable either way. I am glad things happened the way they did because things are being changed as we speak!”
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