OPINION | This article contains commentary that reflects the author's opinion.
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After 22 years, Oklahoma football coach Cale Gundy has resigned after using a “shameful and hurtful” word during a film session in front of players.
Although it’s unclear what word he said, it’s widely speculated that he used the n-word while quoting another person. Gundy emphasized that he was not using the word with derogatory or malicious intent. Nonetheless, he resigned after saying the racial slur.
“What I said was not malicious,” Gundy said. “It wasn’t even intentional. Still, I am mature enough to know that the word I said was shameful and hurtful, no matter my intentions. The unfortunate reality is that someone in my position can cause harm without ever meaning to do so.”
Numerous former and current players have spoken out in defense of Gundy.
Former Oklahoma player and current NFL star Joe Mixon of the Cincinnati Bengals said Gundy doesn’t have a racist bone in his body, mind or soul
“Most important Coach Gundy is not, and I repeat is not a racist in any way nor has a racist bone in his body, mind or soul,” Mixon said. “I grew up in the Bay Area and went to school obviously in Oklahoma.”
“I know racists, I have witnesses both obvious and discreet forms of racism and have known and detested even more actual racist. Coach Gundy is the furthest thing from this type of person. I spent every day for the 1,000 days I was in Norman with him, and I never saw anything that would lead anyone to believe this or think this,” he added.
When resigning, Gundy explained, “Last week, during a film session, I instructed my players to take notes. I noticed a player was distracted and picked up his iPad and read aloud the words that were written on his screen. The words displayed had nothing to do with football. One particular word that I should never – under any circumstances – have uttered was displayed on that screen. In the moment, I did not even realize what I was reading and, as soon as I did, I was horrified.”
“I want to be very clear: the words I read aloud from that screen were not my words. What I said was not malicious; it wasn’t even intentional. Still, I am mature enough to know that the word I said was shameful and hurtful, no matter my intentions. The unfortunate reality is that someone in my position can cause harm without ever meaning to do so.”
Sooner Nation, thank you. pic.twitter.com/BYBOjObGna
— Cale Gundy (@OU_CoachGundy) August 8, 2022
— ⚡️Primetime!!!⚡️ (@Joe_MainMixon) August 8, 2022
More from Fox News:
Oklahoma coach Brent Venables, who is in his first season as the Sooners’ head coach, said those associated with the program are “all accountable for our actions and the resulting outcomes.”
“It’s with sadness that I accept coach Gundy’s resignation,” Venables said. “He’s dedicated more than half his life to Oklahoma football and has served our program and university well. We’re thankful for that commitment.”
Gundy is the brother of Mike Gundy, who coaches Oklahoma State. He was on the Sooners’ staff for all of their 14 conference titles and the national championship season in 2000 under Bob Stoops.
He spent the last seven seasons coaching wide receivers after spending the previous 16 seasons coaching running backs. He was among the holdovers when Venables took over in December 2021.
L’Damian Washington will coach the receivers on an interim basis. The Sooners kick off against the Miners on Sept. 3.