Creighton University has suspended men's basketball coach Greg McDermott for telling a team that included several Black players that they had to "stay on the plantation." Athletic director Bruce Rasmussen said Thursday that McDermott's remarks "were not in alignment with Creighton's commitment to racial equity, diversity, and respect," CNN reports. He said McDermott is now suspended from all team activities and "further sanctions remain under consideration." McDermott, who is white, has apologized for using the analogy in a locker room pep talk after a loss Saturday. He admitted telling the team: "Guys, we got to stick together. We need both feet in. I need everybody to stay on the plantation. I can't have anybody leave the plantation."
"I made a mistake and I own it," the coach tweeted after the suspension was announced. "Mistakes come with consequences, and I accept and agree with the suspension." McDermott had addressed the situation Wednesday after the Creighton Bluejays lost to Villanova 72-60, the Creightonian reports. "The pain that I caused our players who look to me as a mentor and as a leader—the pain that I saw in their eyes, was immense," he said. "That’s where my disappointment is in myself. What I’ve done to some young people that I love very much, that’s a cross that I’m gonna have to bear for a while." (Read more Creighton Bluejays stories.)