Man Says Diabetes Partially to Blame for Racist Rant

His comments were directed at a high school basketball team
By Luke Roney,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 13, 2021 10:25 AM CST
Man Says Diabetes Partially to Blame for Racist Rant
Stock image.   (Getty Images)

A sports commentator in Oklahoma who was caught on a microphone making “inappropriate and racist comments” about a girls’ high school basketball team says that diabetes is partially to blame, the Washington Post reports. During the Thursday game, Matt Rowan, who was hired to film the playoff game between Norman High and Midwest City, used the n-word to refer to Norman High players as they knelt during the national anthem, adding “I hope Norman gets their ass kicked,” per the Tahlequah Daily Press. In a statement, Rowan acknowledges making “statements that cannot be taken back,” saying: “I am a family man. I am married, have two children and at one time was a youth pastor.” He denies being a racist, adding “I will state that I suffer from Type 1 diabetes and during the game my sugar was spiking.”

“While not excusing my remarks it is not unusual when my sugar spikes that I become disoriented and often say things that are not appropriate as well as hurtful.”Rowan’s comments have drawn widespread condemnation, and the livestreaming platform that he owns, OSPN, has lost its contract with the school district. In a statement, the NFHS, which provides announcers for games, said it is “aggressively investigating the incident and have immediately cut ties with the third-party production crew that was involved.” Norman High player Myka Perry called Rowan’s comments “disrespectful and disgusting,” tweeting: “This is why we kneel. I love my sisters, and this makes us much stronger. You are part of the problem.” Norman High went on to win the game against Midwest City, per the Post. (Read more Oklahoma stories.)

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