Missouri football team forces change at university

by STEVEN GEHEGAN/Staff Writer

The University of Missouri has been plagued by many different, largely racially-motivated acts against students.

When events such as this happen in the world of sports, athletes need to step up, and the Missouri football players did that in a big way.

It all started with many different racial acts committed on campus, while university president Tim Wolfe decided that these incidents were just minor and did not take actions to try to stop it. The longer the semester went on, the worse these racial acts became.

One Missouri student went to the extreme to try to make a change and get Wolfe removed from his presidency. Jonathan Butler decided that he would go on a hunger strike as long as Wolfe was letting these racial acts continue. This action by Butler inspired the Missouri football team to take action.

After hearing of the hunger strike, the Missouri football team decided to go on a strike of their own. The Missouri players and coaches said they would refuse to play any more football games as long as Wolfe was in charge. The first day of the strike, Wolfe deiced that it would be fine if he kept his job. Then, the following day, he decided to step down. It took the action of athletes to create change for the better. 

The strike did not last too long, but not everyone on the team was on board. Some of the players, no matter their race, did not want to stop playing games altogether. There were also some players who believed that the strike happened because of the current record of 4-5. Some were saying that this would not have happened if they were 9-0, and they might have been right. Even if they were 9-0, some of the players who really believe in the strike would have left, and it only takes a handful of players to leave to keep the Tigers from playing a game.

It was nice to see athletes take up a social stance and try to make change, to stop all of the racial actions that have been happening on campus. While the athletes played a major part in getting Wolf removed, the major reason he was removed was because of the financial side of sports.      

If the Missouri football team had decided to boycott the game against Brigham Young University, Missouri would have been fined more than $ 1 million for missing a game. While it was great these athletes stood up for what they believed in, it was the money these football players brought in that caused the university to make a change.

Now that Wolfe has been removed, that change can happen on the Missouri campus and be a better place for all of the students.missouri-

Author: Plainsman Press Staff

The student newspaper of South Plains College.

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