Oklahoma State football coach Mike Gundy took to social media for the second day in a row Tuesday to address the controversy over a T-shirt he recently wore, and this time he apologized to his players for the “pain and discomfort” he created.
Cowboys running Chuba Hubbard tweeted Monday that it was “unacceptable” that Gundy posted a photo of himself on social media wearing a One America News (OAN) Network T-shirt. Hubbard threatened to boycott the team over the issue.
OAN, a conservative network frequently cited by President Donald Trump, has been widely criticized for allegedly promoting propaganda and conspiracy theories. It also has disparaged the Black Lives Matter movement.
Later Monday, Hubbard and Gundy appeared in a joint video posted on Twitter. Gundy said he was listening to his players and promised change, but he didn’t apologize. Hubbard apologized for criticizing Gundy online and not in person but didn’t take back his original sentiments.
After the joint video drew lots of negative response on social media, Gundy spoke publicly again Tuesday.
In a video posted on his personal Twitter account, Gundy said, “I had a great meeting with our team today. Our players expressed their feelings as individuals and as team members,” Gundy said. “They helped me see through their eyes how the T shirt affected their hearts. Once I learned how that network 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 Matters 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.”
— Mike Gundy (@CoachGundy) June 16, 2020
Hubbard retweeted Gundy’s video, writing, “A step in the right direction.”
Numerous current and former Cowboys players backed Hubbard’s stance on social media Monday, prompting statements from the school’s athletic director and president, then leading to meetings between Gundy and his players before the video emerged of Gundy and Hubbard making amends.
On Tuesday, Hubbard tweeted that he realized he has “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,” he wrote. “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.”
— Chuba Hubbard (@Hubbard_RMN) June 16, 2020
As a redshirt sophomore in 2019, Hubbard led the nation with 2,094 rushing yards and topped the Big 12 with 21 rushing touchdowns. He was the Big 12 Offensive Player of the Year and a consensus All-American. Hubbard, who is Canadian, finished eighth in Heisman Trophy voting in 2019.
–Field Level Media (@FieldLevelMedia)