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Home SPORTS Duke volleyball's Rachel Richardson interrupted her with racial slurs, and BYU didn't...

Duke volleyball’s Rachel Richardson interrupted her with racial slurs, and BYU didn’t do much about it

BYUThe athletic department is under fire after Duke women’s volleyball player Rachel Richardson was heckled with racial slurs during a game in Provo over the weekend. Richardson and Duke have criticized BYU’s slow response to properly handle the situation during and after the game.

The incident first became public when Richardson’s godmother, Lesa Pamplin, tweeted details of the abuse Richardson and his teammates listened during the game. Richardson issued his own statement on Sunday sharing his experience at the game and calling for this to be used as a teachable moment throughout college athletics.

Richardson received racial slurs, including the “n-word”, while serving during the second set by a fan in the BYU student section. richardson’s father The News and Observer said the comments came from multiple fans.and continued in the fourth set.

When BYU learned of the situation, they reportedly stationed a police officer between the Duke bench and the student section, but did not remove the fan(s) from the arena.

“There was knowledge of the insults, by the referees and the coaching staff,” Richardson’s father said. told the News and Observer. “And nothing was done.”

A BYU spokesman said the school was unable to identify the heckler during the game. After Duke identified the perpetrator after the game, the person was banned by BYU from all campus athletic facilities. The person who received the ban was not a student.

“This is an opportunity to dig into closed cultures that tolerate amoral racist acts, like those on display on Friday night, and change them for the better,” Richardson wrote. Here is the full statement:

Richardson spoke about what he heard during the game in his statement:

“The insults and comments turned into threats that made us feel unsafe. Both BYU officials and coaching staff were made aware of the incident during the game, but failed to take the necessary steps to stop the unacceptable behavior and create a safe environment. As a result, my teammates and I had to fight just to get through the rest of the game, instead of just being able to focus on our game so we could compete at the highest level possible. They also failed to adequately address the situation immediately after the game when it was brought to their attention again. No athlete, regardless of race, should be subjected to such hostile conditions.”

BYU athletic director Tom Holmoe addressed the situation in the upcoming game but has faced criticism for refusing to call the incident racist.

Richardson was scheduled to meet with Holmoe and BYU volleyball coach Heather Olmstead over the weekend, but Olmstead reportedly did not show up for the meeting.

Here is the full BYU statement. Duke has also issued a statement.

We will update this story as it develops.


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