(Omaha, NE) -- Creighton University says head basketball coach Greg McDermott has been reinstated following a brief suspension from team activities.
McDermott was suspended last week after he made, what the university called, inappropriate comments after a loss two weeks ago. Last week, McDermott issued an apology and admitted to saying, "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."
On Monday, Athletics Director Bruce Rasmussen issued the following statement:
Over the past week, either Father Hendrickson or I have consulted with Creighton men’s basketball student-athletes, their coaches and parents, former student-athletes, future recruits and, of course, members of the University community regarding Coach Greg McDermott’s offensive remarks on February 27. I also witnessed the courage of our student-athletes when they used their voices to share their true feelings about last week’s remarks. Let me be clear: Coach McDermott’s use of the “plantation” analogy was egregious and has absolutely no place in our society. His remarks have caused significant hurt to many on our campus and in our community.
Through his immediate apology, ownership of his actions, difficult dialogue with his team, and more, Coach McDermott has demonstrated a commitment to grow. I believe his apology, his commitment to grow from this, to learn, and to regain the trust of his student-athletes and others impacted by his words. From our conversations, he understands that forgiveness must be earned, and he is willing to work for it. His actions during his career reveal an individual committed to his team and his community. As such, Coach Greg McDermott has been reinstated for all team activities, including this week’s BIG EAST Tournament.
Coach will participate with other leaders on campus in a program beginning next month with the Racial Equity Institute – a program that is designed to develop the capacity of participants to better understand racism in its institutional and structural forms. By examining how institutions produce unjust outcomes, the program assists in generating meaningful plans for positive change.Coach McDermott is eager to participate in this and other important programs and activities, and recognizes that this is a critical next step in our collective learning process.
We will use this as an opportunity to grow and invest in being better. We must.