One Kentucky high school basketball team either has some of the dumbest student fans or the most racist. Or both.
After tagging Cordia (Hazard, Ky.) High players Emmanuel Owootoah and Marlon King -- both Canadian transfers of Caribbean descent -- in Facebook and Twitter posts featuring a burning flag and a noose hanging over the oh-so-creative phrase "[Expletive] Canada," Knott County Central (Hindman, Ky.) High students began chanting "USA!" prior to a district championship game between the two schools on Friday, according to reports published on Kentucky.com and ZagsBlog.com (h/t Big Lead).
"They should have better class than that, man," Owootoah told Kentucky.com after dropping 24 points in a 66-60 loss to their rivals 20 miles down the road. "But at the same time, I thought it was funny. I don't let stuff like that get to my head."
The Knott County Central principal told LEX 18 News the chants are "open to interpretation," since his school's mascot is the Patriots. Good one. The principal knows only of one student who was involved and says the taunting goes both ways between the schools. OK, then. Nothing to see here, I guess.
But what about the fact that Eduardo and Jessica Flores, who serve as guardians to both Owootoah and King, have bullet holes in their back door, a smashed mailbox and report "repeated" attacks on the children, according to the ZagsBlog.com report?
Might want to address those issues instead of trying to bury them under a rug by claiming the least egregious of all the acts -- the "USA!" chants -- are "open to interpretation." Especially since the teams may meet again with a regional title on the line this week.
Not a good look, especially since the University of Kentucky has scouted Owootoah. He might think twice about the Wildcats, even if the acts of a select number of folks from Hindman don't reflect the opinions of most other Kentuckians.
Likewise, as the Big Lead notes, No. 1 national recruit in the Class of 2013 Andrew Wiggins is expected to choose between Kentucky and his father's alma mater, Florida State. Wiggins is both black and Canadian.
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- Marlon King