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South Carolina Women’s Basketball Coach Cancels Games with BYU Despite No Evidence of Racial Slur

South Carolina women’s basketball coach Dawn Staley canceled the team’s upcoming two-game series with Brigham Young University (BYU) on Friday after Duke University volleyball player Rachel Richardson claimed a BYU fan called her racial slurs during a recent game.

South Carolina women’s basketball was scheduled to start its season with a home game against BYU, followed by an away game on BYU’s campus during the 2023-24 season.

“As a head coach, my job is to do what’s best for my players and staff,” Staley said in a press release. “The incident at BYU has led me to reevaluate our home-and-home, and I don’t feel that this is the right time for us to engage in this series.”

South Carolina Gamecocks Head Coach Dawn Staley giving out instructions during the Women's Final Four game between the South Carolina Gamecocks and...

South Carolina Gamecocks Head Coach Dawn Staley giving out instructions during the Women’s Final Four game between the South Carolina Gamecocks and the Louisville Cardinals on April 1st, 2022, at Target Center in Minneapolis, MN.(Bailey Hillesheim/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Staley’s decision comes after Richardson, who is black, claimed a white BYU fan hurled racial slurs at her during the game and told her to “watch her back” as she returned to the bus after the game.

However, BYU Police Department reportedly could not validate Richardson’s claims about the fan.

As Breitbart News reported:

The claims and counterclaims sent the BYU Police Department to search through video of the game to verify the man’s behavior. But, according to the department, they see no evidence that the man banned by the school acted out in the way he was accused.

‘When we watched the video, we did not observe that behavior from him,’ BYU Police Lt. George Besendorfer told the Tribune.

A BYU officer also agreed. ‘There was nothing seen on the game film that led me to believe’ that the man ‘was the person who was making comments to the player who complained about being called the N-word,’ the officer said.

Despite the BYU police department’s conclusion, the school still banned the fan from future games and issued an apology to Duke volleyball. Additionally, the Utah-based school also eliminated the student fan section from its volleyball matches.

Rachel Richardson

Duke volleyball player Rachel Richardson

South Carolina’s athletic director Ray Tanner backed up Staley’s decision to cancel the series with BYU.

“Dawn and I have discussed her thoughts on the situation,” Tanner said. “I support Dawn and all of our coaches in their right to schedule games and opponents that are best for their teams.”

Jordan Dixon-Hamilton is a reporter for Breitbart News. Write to him at or follow him on Twitter. 

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