Oregon State dismissed redshirt freshman tight end Rocco Carley after a recording of Carley making racist and bigoted remarks became public Wednesday evening.
Coach Jonathan Smith made the announcement of Carley’s dismissal late Wednesday night.
“I became aware of the comments made by Rocco Carley earlier this evening,” Smith said. “I immediately shared the audio with [athletic director] Scott Barnes. We both agreed this language and attitude is entirely unacceptable, regardless of circumstance or environment. I spoke with Rocco and dismissed him from the team. I will not tolerate racism or hate speech.”
Carley apologizes, says video is satire
Carley received swift condemnation across social media when the audio became public. In it, he uses the N-word and makes derogatory comments about gay people and Muslims with a fake southern accent.
He quickly apologized for what he said in the recording and said he made the comments three years ago in an attempt at satire.
“To my family, my community, and everyone I have associated with, I am sorry,” Carley wrote. “This video was taken about three years ago in a groupchat where me and my friends were saying stupid things. This does not condone anything of what I have said but I promise you all that this video does not represent me. I was doing an accent of a southern man and giving a very satire example of what we all thought would be funny. This is no way shape or form makes what I said right. I am truthfully sorry to everyone I have hurt and offended and I understand that I have not represented me or my family in any positive way during this situation. To all of my brothers, teammates and everyone of color that I have associated with, I hope that you know me well enough to know I am in no way shape or form a racist. Again I apologize and I could not be more ashamed of my actions.”
Smith’s decision to dismiss Carley was met with approval by linebacker and leading tackler Avery Roberts. Carley redshirted in 2019.
The university itself also condemned Carley’s comments.
We prohibit discrimination in any form. The comments referred to in this post are not in keeping with the university's commitment to a safe, welcoming and inclusive community. Action will be taken immediately. https://t.co/v18HLqdjJD— Oregon State University (@OregonState) June 4, 2020
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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports.
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