Marcus Smart, a guard for Oklahoma State University, has been suspended for three games after shoving a fan during a game with Texas Tech. Smart told coaches that he shoved Texas Tech fan John Orr after Orr called him a racial epithet.
Commissioner Bob Bowlsby said that Smart’s actions “were a clear violation of the Big 12 Conference’s Sportmanship and Ethical Conduct Policy.” after the league reviewed the incident.
Smart, who apologized for his actions in a news conference Sunday, will begin serving the suspension Tuesday when the Cowboys travel to face Texas in Austin. The Big 12 said Smart will be suspended from all team travel and gameday activities through the Cowboys’ Feb. 17 game against Baylor. He will be allowed to practice with the team.
“Some things are more important than winning and losing,” said Mike Holder, Oklahoma State’s athletic director. “Your respect you have, your self image, all that that takes a lifetime to build can be gone in a blink of an eye. Playing competitive athletics is a privilege. It’s not a right, it’s a privilege. And that privilege can be taken away from you.”
The next game Smart will be eligible to play will be Feb. 22 at home, Oklahoma State’s second regular-season meeting with Texas Tech.
Orr has a reputation of this kind of behavior, and several people involved in basketball, including former players and commentators have similar stories about Orr and/or Texas Tech. Video evidence shows that Orr may have called Smart a “piece of crap,” though there is no indication that a racial slur was used. Orr has apologized to Smart, Oklahoma State, and Texas Tech.
Should Smart have been suspended?
Should the league hold fans be accountable for harassing players?
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