When Barack Obama's memorial speech for Newtown shooting victims cut into Sunday night football coverage, plenty of sports fans sounded off on Twitter, with some tweets making racial references to the president (Buzzfeed has a collection here). But when Bradley Patterson, a third-string long-snapper for the University of North Alabama, tweeted, "Take that n***** off the tv, we wanna watch football!" his school immediately dropped him from the football team.
North Alabama's athletic director made this statement over Twitter late Sunday:
Thx 2 everyone who brought the inappropriate tweet to our attention. @unaathletics does not condone. He is no longer a member of the team.— Mark Linder (@UNAAthletics) December 17, 2012
Patterson apologized for the offensive tweet in an interview with WAFF-TV, saying he's not a racist:
"I put that on Twitter. I can't take it back, and it's always going to be in the back of somebody's mind that I said that, but I can't make them forgive me," Patterson said.
He also issued this apology to the president:
I want to apologize to President Obama for my outbreak last night. What I said was uncalled for, but I didn't even stop to think what he was saying before it was sent. If I could go back right now, I would change it. I wouldn't hesitate to do so.