It was well noted that a portion of the Texas Tech student section began chanting, “F*** you, Trae Young!” towards the end of Tuesday’s win over the Oklahoma Sooners. I wrote a I wrote a I wrote a piece on Wednesday condemning. I got a well written email from a Texas Tech student who was at the game on Tuesday. I asked him if I could share it with our readers and he agreed. So, since I’m all about getting all sides to a story and having varying opinions, here are his thoughts. This student asked to remain anonymous.
I was in attendance and sitting in the student section for the game, and I wanted to offer my thoughts on the whole Texas Tech/Trae Young chant situation and the backlash it has received.
First, I’d like to make clear that I am 100% against the vulgarity. Not only were there hundreds of children in attendance (including Trae Young’s younger siblings), but there were also more than 10,000 people who bought tickets to the game who I would guess did not want to hear it either. It was also incredibly embarrassing for my school and the fans and alumni to have that sort of thing be aired out to the entire country. In fact, the group of guys behind me were repeatedly shut down for trying to start the same chant. Unfortunately, other groups of people and other sections of students had more success getting people to join in.
Texas Tech lets around 4,500 students into the home basketball games. I would guess the small number of people that could be heard yelling during the quiet parts of the game totaled around 500-600 students. That is a pretty small share. I would also guess that many of these students knew very little about the game or even basketball in general. The guys behind me didn’t know that a team shoots “Bonus” free throws after they’ve been fouled 7 times in a half. These are the kind of people who come to the games knowing only that there’s a big game against Oklahoma and that OU has a kid named Trae Young who is supposedly the second coming of Steph Curry. So what do they do? Yell obscenities at him, and not even creative ones at that.
It is ridiculous to compare this incident to the Marcus Smart debacle in 2015. Marcus Smart was not called any sort of racial slur as can be heard in the audio of the incident. That is a bogus, debunked, cop out claim used by Smart to dismiss his temper tantrum, which was not an isolated incident as seen by his flipping off a Bulls fan less than a year ago. Hearing Seth Greenberg imply that the yelling was racially motivated is just absurd. It was probably more motivated by the nonstop, ridiculous coverage people like Greenberg and ESPN give Young even when he has terrible games.
Lastly, 18-22 year olds yelling obscenities at sporting events is hardly unique to Texas Tech. Look around the Big 12 – West Virginia and “Eat Sh*t Pitt,” Kansas State and Iowa State with the “F*ck KU” and “F*ck Bill Self” chants last season – and at many student sections around the country – like LSU and “Neck” and Wisconsin with the, “Eat Sh*t, F*ck You.”
None of these things are excuses for the vulgarities on display towards a single player, even one who dissed Tech when choosing where to go to school by saying the program “needs more talent.” Tech fans have to do a better job of nipping that sort of thing in the bud. With that being said, I do believe it has been blown a little bit out of proportion. I am angry that a few students can give a whole fan base a bad name, and I am especially embarrassed it was during a nationally televised game, but I think we all need to take a look at the bigger picture. This incident is not representative of Chris Beard, the basketball team, the university, or Texas Tech alumni, students, and fans. We must be better going forward.