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Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Sports

UH volleyball players appear in video with racist caption, drawing outrage from other student-athletes


UH volleyball players Isabel Theut and Abbie Jackson appeared in a video posted on Sunday by an anonymous Twitter account that included a racist caption alluding to the infamous 1935 lynching of two Black teenagers in Columbus, Theut’s hometown.

Theut, a graduate student in the C.T. Bauer College of Business, was shown laughing in the video while Jackson, a senior, drove near the large oak tree where two teenagers were lynched by a mob in November 1935. The original video appeared to have been filmed by freshman volleyball player Ryleigh Whitekettle on Snapchat, according to the Twitter account.

“‘This is the hanging tree where we used to hang people,’” the video’s caption reads, although it was unclear who made the comment.

The video has been viewed over 14,500 times within a day of it being posted. The video was also posted on TikTok by University of Miami volleyball player Taylor Burrell and had been viewed more than 54,000 times, with over 6,000 likes before being deleted.

A screenshot of comments on Taylor Burrell's TikTok account after posting the video.

A screenshot of comments on Taylor Burrell’s TikTok account after posting the video.

Several UH athletes took to social media to speak out about the video.

“Smh this what y’all on?” tweeted UH football’s sophomore offensive lineman Cam’Ron Johnson in response to the video.

“Pretty disingenuous by these two,” tweeted UH football quarterback Ike Ogbogu.

“Pathetic,” tweeted freshman UH track and field athlete Tianna Randle.

Jackson, Theut and Whitekettle’s Twitter profiles all disappeared on Sunday after the video was posted.

UH volleyball players Abbie Jackson, Isabel Theut and Ryleigh Whitekettle's Twitter accounts were either deleted or deactivated after the video was posted to the platform.

UH volleyball players Abbie Jackson, Isabel Theut and Ryleigh Whitekettle’s respective Twitter accounts were either deleted or deactivated after the video was posted to the platform.

When asked about the video and the potential actions that could take place as a result, a UH athletics spokesperson did not comment beyond confirming they are aware of the video.

“We are aware of the situation and are actively performing our due diligence. Due to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), we are unable to provide additional comment or specifics at this time.”

This is a developing story that will be updated once more information is learned.

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