Furman University's Student Newspaper

The Paladin

Furman University's Student Newspaper

The Paladin

Furman University's Student Newspaper

The Paladin

Hoops Handles Star Recruit’s Big Mistake


A little under a month since Furman basketball recruit Andrew Taylor was accused of making racist remarks towards a competitor, Furman Hoops has made their decision.

On January 22nd, Greenville News broke the story, announcing that Taylor, a senior at Corbin High School, was recorded on video saying, “sometimes you just have to put the monkey back in its cage” during a game.

His competitors at rival school Knox Central alleged that the comment was made as a racial insult.

Since then, Furman Hoops have handled it excellently. “We took it very, very seriously.” Coach Richey said in an interview with The Paladin earlier this week. “One of our values is love.” Coach Richey said, “It went against our values and we want to obviously create a very diverse environment.”

Furman’s basketball staff may have taken some time to come to their decision, but it is clear that this delay is due to the thoroughness of their investigation.

“We’ve gotten our whole university involved in investigating this situation,” Coach Richey said, “from our team to our staff, to our administration, to our Chief Diversity Officer, even including some students here.”

The results of the investigation, Richey said, do not indicate a bigger problem. “Its been a clear, isolated incident that was a major mistake.”

“We dug into this thing really, really deep. We talked to his AAU coach of multiple years, who is African American, who is completely stunned by this.” Richey detailed, “and out of his final three schools, we were the most diverse team.”

It seems Taylor, still a senior in high school, has handled his mistake well. “Andrew has handled this like a man. He came on campus himself and he met with our team,” Coach Richey assured, adding that Taylor met with other university representatives as well to learn from his mistake.

Taylor has also agreed to all the terms set out for him by the program and the University, and will continue to undergo steps to make his mistake a learning experience. “Its been nice to see the responsibility and the maturity that Andrew has handled the situation with,” Richey added.

The players were kept involved throughout the process as well. Coach Richey assured that the players were informed at the start and kept updated throughout the investigation. They also had a hand in the final decision.

“After (the players) got all the information and all the facts, they voted unanimously to let, to want Andrew Taylor to be a part of this team and university,” Richey said.

Freshman guard Alex Hunter, a rising leader on the Paladin roster, expressed his opinion on the subject as well, “As a team. I think a some of our best qualities are our togetherness and trust which allow us to be successful. I think the team, coaching staff, and the university have done a great job handling the situation.”

The program is clearly taking a constructive approach to the incident. “This is a great learning experience for everybody involved,” Coach Richey added.

He and the rest of the program have taken steps to prevent a similar incident from happening again. “We’re going to do some diversity training and awareness as a team this summer… We all need education in this area.” Richey said.

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