Oklahoma State’s Marcus Smart Suspended Three Games After Shoving Texas Tech Fan
Sunday afternoon, the Big 12 Conference announced a three game suspension for Oklahoma State’s Marcus Smart after he shoved a Texas Tech fan during Saturday night’s game.
In a press conference at Oklahoma State University, Smart apologized for his actions at the United Spirit Arena.
“I want to apologize to the fan. I want to apologize to my teammates, my coaching staff, Coach Ford, my family and Oklahoma State University,” Smart said. “This is not how I conduct myself. This is not his this program is run. I let my emotions get the best of me and I am taking full responsibility. This is all upon me.”
The Big 12 Conference released their own statement concerning the suspension, “Mr. Smart’s actions were a clear violation of the Big 12 Conference’s Sportsmanship and Ethical Conduct Policy,” said Commissioner Bob Bowlsby. “Such behavior has no place in athletics, and will not be tolerated. I appreciate the efforts of Oklahoma State University athletics director Mike Holder in addressing this matter, and believe this is an appropriate response to an inappropriate action.”
Meanwhile, Texas Tech University officials released their own statement concerning the incident. Their statement reads in part:
Texas Tech interviewed Mr. Orr along with numerous fans, photographers and arena personnel that were seated in the area surrounding him. Mr. Orr vehemently denied the accusation that he used a racial slur and no one in the vicinity of Mr. Orr heard such a slur.
Mr. Orr has admitted to directing an inappropriate phrase toward Marcus Smart. Texas Tech has been able to verify that statement independently through video provided by Texas Tech Sports Broadcasting. At no point on the film can a racial slur be heard.
Texas Tech is committed to sportsmanship and expects fans to abide by the rules set forth by the Big 12 Conference and the university. Comments such as those used by Mr. Orr are unacceptable and not condoned by Texas Tech University.
As a result of this incident, Mr. Orr has voluntarily agreed to not attend a Texas Tech home or away basketball game for the remainder of the season.
Jeff Orr released a statement of his own, in which he admits what he said to Smart, “I would like to take this opportunity to offer my sincere apologies to Marcus Smart, Oklahoma State, Tubby Smith and the Texas Tech Men’s Basketball program. My actions last night were inappropriate and do not reflect myself or Texas Tech – a university I love dearly. I regret calling Mr. Smart a “piece of crap” but I want to make it known that I did not use a racial slur of any kind. Additionally, I would like to offer my apologies to Texas Tech fans that have been embarrassed by the attention this incident has created.”
Texas Tech Athletics has released raw video footage from Saturday night’s incident. The phrase “piece of crap” can clearly be heard at the 18 second mark: