UC Irvine Head Coach Russell Turner issues statement regarding insensitive comments

Photo Courtesy UC Irvine Athletics

UC Irvine head coach Russell Turner referred to Oregon freshman Louis King as “Queen” several times during his team’s NCAA Tournament loss in San Jose on Sunday. He has now issued a statement apologizing for his actions.


Statement from UC Irvine Men’s Basketball Head Coach Russell Turner:

“I would like to address my post-game comments. I recognize my actions were inappropriate and insensitive.  I share UC Irvine’s belief that inclusivity and diversity are paramount values, and I apologize for not understanding that my actions during the game suggested otherwise.

I respect Oregon’s men’s basketball program, its student-athletes, and its coaches.  Since the conclusion of the game, I have spoken to Louis, his parents, and to Oregon’s head coach Dana Altman.  They have graciously accepted my explanation and apology.

I take seriously my responsibility as a campus and community leader, and I regret that my actions during the Oregon game did not meet the standard of leadership I should consistently set.  For that, I apologize to the UC Irvine community, including the student-athletes and coaches of our men’s basketball program.  When student-athletes on our team make mistakes, I expect them to take responsibility and to learn from their mistakes in order to improve themselves.  I will do the same.  I accept full responsibility for my ill-considered actions, and I will learn from this situation to be a more thoughtful coach and competitor.”

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