School Wants More Than an Apology for Headline

Apparent pun referenced foundation begun after suicide of quarterback's brother
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 23, 2019 5:16 PM CDT
School Wants More Than an Apology for Headline
South Carolina starting quarterback Ryan Hilinski walks off the field after his team was beaten 34-14 by Missouri on Saturday in Columbia, Mo.   (AP Photo/L.G. Patterson)

Under other circumstances, "Hilinski Hope Sinks" might have been appropriate for a headline about South Carolina's 34-14 loss to Missouri on Saturday. But the brother of Ryan Hilinski, South Carolina's quarterback, killed himself last year, and the family started a foundation in his honor called Hilinski's Hope. Tyler Hilinski was the Washington State Cougars' quarterback when he died. The State newspaper in Columbia apologized for the headline, saying the reference to the foundation, which works to eliminate the stigma of mental health problems, was unintentional. But the school wasn't satisfied, USA Today reports.

"We don't believe their apology is enough," said a statement Sunday from the university's president, athletic director and football coach. "We urge The State to be a leader in advocating and destigmatizing mental illness by making a very public effort to help fund and provide educational awareness to this very real problem." The newspaper has not answered the school's statement. Earlier this month, fans held up three fingers at the start of the third quarter of South Carolina's game against Alabama to draw national attention to the foundation, per WISTV. Ryan Hilinski now wears No. 3 on his jersey, the number his brother wore. (Read more headlines stories.)

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