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Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott responds to #WeAreUnited players threatening to sit out season

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Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott responded to a group of football players who have threatened to boycott the season this fall, saying in a letter on Monday night that he’s reviewing their list of demands and is “happy to discuss” them, according to Sports Illustrated.

A group of Pac-12 players officially threatened to sit out of the season this fall if the conference didn’t meet their list of demands regarding health and safety protections related to the COVID-19 pandemic, racial justice initiatives, economic rights, fair compensation and more.

“Thank you for your note from last night and related documents, which we are currently reviewing and will discuss with our members over the next couple of days,” Scott wrote back to the #WeAreUnited group, via Sports Illustrated. “We are eager to hear more about your concerns and very happy to discuss. I will come back to you in the coming days following discussion with our members and student-athlete leaders to schedule a call for this week to discuss the matters that you have raised.”

Scott expanded on several topics in his response, including their safety plan related to the coronavirus, their social justice and anti-racism plan and more. He insisted that their health is the top priority this season and that he supports any player who wants to opt out over coronavirus concerns.

Scott said he plans to speak with them later this week, though did not specify a time.

11 players write Scott directly

Eleven players wrote a letter to Scott directly on Sunday to expand on the list of demands and requested daily Zoom meetings with him and every athletic director in the conference “until our demands are met.”

“The lack of health and safety standards and enforcement in NCAA sports is already playing a role in COVID-19 cases among athletes throughout the conference,” they wrote, in part. “We believe a football season under these conditions would be reckless and put us at needless risk.

“The lack of regard for our health and safety is central to the systemic racial injustices imposed by NCAA sports that disproportionately exploits Black athletes physically, academically, and financially. Black athletes make up the majority of revenue sports rosters but have the lowest graduation rates and are denied basic economic rights and freedoms.”

A player from all but one school in the conference signed the letter. Colorado was the only school not included.

Larry Scott talks at a podium.
Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott replied to a group of athletes who are threatening to boycott the season on Monday. (Alika Jenner/Getty Images)

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