Ole Miss Basketball Players Take a Knee

Six members of the University of Mississippi men's basketball team went down on a knee during the National Anthem at the same time as about a hundred pro-Confederate supporters protested in Oxford. Two more Ole Miss players took a knee during the anthem's final line.

The protesters are from two groups upset the university is removing its ties to the Confederacy, including emblems, songs and ending its use of the mascot, Colonel Reb. The march began at a confederate monument at the city square and ended at another monument on campus.

Ole Miss was playing Georgia yesterday in an S-E-C basketball game.

At a press conference Ole Miss coach Kermit Davis said he didn't know about the players' plans to kneel before the game, saying "This was all about the hate groups that came to our community to try to spread racism and bigotry. It's created a lot of tension for our campus. Our players made an emotional decision to show these people they're not welcome on our campus, and we respect our players' freedom and ability to choose that.''

The Confederate battle flag was banned from campus two decades ago and "Dixie" is no longer played at football games.

The university has been slowly moving to remove ties to the Confederacy so as to not upset alumni who support those traditions.

Ole Miss won, beating Georgia 72-71.

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