It’s been a tradition in American sports to play the National Anthem as the teams prepare to play the scheduled contest. For a long time, that was just a part of the game. There have been small protests around the National Anthem at sporting events for years, but the protesting intensified after Colin Kaepernick’s kneeling battle with the NFL and the NBA kneeling in protest collectively this past season in the bubble.
High school teams across the country have also taken their moment before games to peacefully protest against what they believe is happening. I’m not here to pass judgment on the protest, I’m here to tell you sometimes there’s a story that is so ironic it hurts.
In the most basic sense, the headline of this story could read, “High school girls saying racism exists encounter racist.” End of story.
It’s not even the hidden racism you read about. It’s a group of grown men before a high school basketball game they are being paid to announce calling a group of high school girls racial slurs and hoping they get beat.
The game in question was Norman High School girls’ basketball game versus Midwest City in the Oklahoma 6A State Basketball Tournament. NHFS, a national online broadcasting company, was airing the game when this was caught on a hot mic:
The broadcaster slinging the hate toward the Norman basketball team was later identified as Scott Sapulpa according to The Oklahoman. “I hope they get their ass kicked,” Sapulda says after noting that the team was kneeling. “F****** n******.”
Sapulda is a former high school coach who has been broadcasting this season under contract by OSSAA for the State Tournament. The OSSAA has since released this statement:
“On behalf of the NFHS Network and the OSSAA, we sincerely apologize that this happened at one of our events. While we are currently investigating the incident, this crew will not be doing any more games for the remainder of our championships.”
Not only should Sapulda not do another game this weekend, but he should also be banned from broadcasting. After events like this, I always hear, “You have to be careful around a hot mic!” I hate that. I mean, it’s true. But you have very little integrity if it takes a hot mic to not say stupid racist crap. How about this, “Don’t be an idiot racist.”
That seems easier than assuming your mic is hot.
Also, was this broadcaster respecting the National Anthem? Did he stand up and take his headset off and salute? He’s worried about the team saluting while he’s cussing them, does he not see the irony there? I certainly see it. I hope you do too.
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