South Carolina women’s basketball head coach Don Staley has announced that the Gamecocks will not face BYU in a home game series due to begin this year. Duke, a black volleyball player, accused BYU home spectators of yelling racial slurs at her during last week’s game.
“As a head coach, my job is to do what’s best for my players and staff,” Staley said. said in a statement Friday evening. “The BYU incident made me re-evaluate our house and home and I don’t feel like now is the right time for us to be in this series.”
The Gamecocks were scheduled to open the 2022 season at home against BYU on November 7 and then head to BYU the following season.
Rachel Richardson, Blue Devils sophomore forward claimed that she and her black teammates were criticized throughout the team’s match at BYU, and that officials, coaches and authorities took too long to respond to their claims. BYU eventually identified and banned the fan, who he said was not a student, claimed to have shouted insults at Richardson and her teammates, but police later said the fan was not a bully.
In any case, Staley didn’t think it was wise to play BYU so soon after the incident and especially didn’t want to go to Utah in 2023. South Carolina athletic director Ray Tanner also said in a statement that he supports Staley and her staff’s decision.
BYU Women’s Basketball Team tweeted after announcing that the team was “extremely disappointed” with South Carolina’s decision and asked for “patience with the ongoing investigation.”
“We believe the solution is to work together to eradicate racism, not separate from each other,” the team added in a tweet.
Staley and the Gamecocks complete their second championship since 2017 after defeating UConn 64-49. She is 366–105 since becoming head coach in 2008 and has made 10 consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances.