Kansas State football players end threat of boycott over student’s Floyd tweet

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Picture of Kansas State football team holding "family" sign

MORGANTOWN, WV – OCTOBER 01: The Kansas State Wildcats takes the field against the West Virginia Mountaineers during the game on October 1, 2016 at Mountaineer Field in Morgantown, West Virginia. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)

MANHATTAN, Kan. — Kansas State football players have called off a threatened boycott in response to what was described as a “divisive” tweet by a student about the death of George Floyd.

The decision was announced on social media by several players. It follows moves by the school to address diversity concerns. The players say they they will track the school’s efforts and re-evaluate their options if needed.

The athletes originally announced the boycott after the tweet by student Jaden McNeil stated, “Congratulations to George Floyd on being drug free for an entire month!” The tweet came a month after Floyd’s death at the hands of four Minneapolis police officers.

“We are demanding that Kansas State University put a policy in place that allows a student to be dismissed for displaying openly racist, threatening or disrespectful actions toward a student or groups of students,” the players originally said in the letter they posted. “We have resolved that we cannot play, practice or meet until these demands are heard and actions taken.”

Although university leadership broadly condemned the tweet, President Richard Myers eventually stated that he would not expel the student, citing the 1st amendment. In the same statement, he acknowledged that K-State has to work harder to “address racial and social injustice issues,” and laid out a multi-step plan to address racial issues at the university.

Read Myers’ full letter, here.

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