Would like to Thank Reed for filling in admirably last week. While I thought about opting out of the season, I’ve decided to take it on a presser-by-presser basis. Here is Narduzzi’s latest, with what he really meant to say in italics.
PAT NARDUZZI: First of all, sorry I’m a few minutes here late. Obviously we practiced today, which is unusual circumstance for us practicing on a Monday, but we obviously gave our kids the opportunity to have the day off tomorrow because obviously it’s an important day across this country for our kids to go out and vote.
So we will not practice tomorrow, and our kids, I would say 50 percent of them, have already voted. We’ve got them all registered. Maybe you’ve heard throughout the time, really back in the summer had them registered to vote back home and get that taken care of.
Look, these guys are going to vote. And for many of them it’s going to be the first time that they vote, and you’ve got to ask yourself why is it that in the 100+ year history of college football is this the first time at as a team, guys are wanting to vote? Is it social media? Is it Facebook? Twitter? Maybe it’s the fake news media? Maybe it’s something else. I don’t know. But I know that no matter how good or bad I am at actually coaching, I care about my guys, and I care about how they feel about the issues. And guess what guys? 90% of college football players are black. Maybe more. You may not care, but you know what, I care. And so enabling them to vote, that’s me caring. That’s me caring about equality for my players. Maybe helping them get one step closer to a world in which they don’t have to worry about getting beat or shot just because they stayed out past midnight or ran a stop sign, and until your 18 year old white son has to worry about getting brutalized by police on a routine traffic stop, or until your wife has to tell their 20 year old white kid to wear their team sweats home on a six hour drive home from college in case he gets pulled over by state cop who has a hard-on for guys that look different from him, or until you have to teach your kids to put their hands at ten and two on the wheel and not reach for anything lest they get shot, well, I’m sorry, but you just aren’t going to be able to get it. I’ve got players who grew up with this shit and lived it every day of their lives. They still live it… You? You white guys reading and writing this, you guys following these black players like you’re a 15 year old girl with a crush; you may have come from humble origins, but you don’t know what it’s like. You’ve never been profiled, treated differently because of the color of your skin. I don’t know what it’s like either because I’ve never lived it, but at least I’m willing to listen and willing to try to understand. And and until you do, you’ve got no room to do anything but support. Do you?
So we really stressed that really in the last couple months to make sure their voices are heard.