Jamaal Franklin has been getting a lot of publicity recently due to an unfortunate incident, flipping the bird during the Mountain West Tournament Championship game. All reports point to Jamaal giving the ref the bird and is being reported that way throughout the nation. The story behind the bird is this; Jamaal was getting heckled by a University of New Mexico fan, that fan in particular call him a “n” and started bring his family into the equation using very racists language.
“I did give a finger out, I can’t deny that” Franklin said. “A Lobo fan was bugging me the whole time calling me the N-word and talking about my family, trying to get under my skin. I shouldn’t have let him get under my skin. I’m going to work real hard to not let this happen again.”
The national media as I said are trying to paint Jamaal as a bad person who deserves to be punished because of this incident. There is condemning evidence against Jamaal including video that has been circulating around the web. There are many different sides that one can take on this issue and some more evidence today by his teammate Tim Shelton as he comes to Jammal’s defense.
“You just have to maintain your emotions and unfortunately he didn’t at that point and it’s on a national level; it’s on national TV,” senior Tim Shelton said. “They can wind it back and see what you did and say it was toward the ref and it might not be. But if it looks that way, perspective is everything.”…….. “I can completely understand how someone can get under you skin because the things they were saying to him were not nice at all,” Shelton said. “I think it’s one of those things that as much as you want it to go in one ear and out the other, it’s hard. I didn’t think things like this would still be said, but it still happened. Somebody’s maturity level wasn’t where it needed to be.”
As a fan, I want to know why the fan in question was not removed from his seat by security and ejected from the arena? That is now in the past all we can do is look to the future and wonder how people can be this ignorant and rude to our athletics in the National Athletics Collegian Council (NCAA.)
Jamaal Franklin is one hell of a player and is one hell of a person. The night that this incident occurred, when the team returned by bus to San Diego, Jamaal had his head in his lap crying and apologized to his team for letting them all down. The same night Jamaal posted this as his facebook status:
“Can’t sleep wish I could start over and re play the game and my actions but I’mma be a man an learn from it won’t happen again and credit to UNM they came ready to play.”
The next day before the “Selection Sunday” event held on campus, Jamaal asked Coach Fisher permission to give a public apology to the team, fans, San Diego Community, and to the world. Coach Fisher agreed, handing the mic to Jamaal and letting him tell the whole story. This is what Coach Fisher had to say about the apology given by Mountain West Conference Player Of The Year Jamaal Franklin:
“It was the appropriate thing (to apologize). It was an inappropriate act,” Fisher said. “That one was not a good decision. I appreciate what he said, but I wish we didn’t have to say it.” Steve Fisher via Daily Aztec
Everyone now knows the full extent surrounding the situation and hopefully understands just because it looked like he flicked off the ref he would never do that. By giving the bird Jamaal Franklin did break the MWC Student Honor Code and could be reprimanded for the incident. But with all things considered we do not feel that he will be suspended for his actions. The Athletic Department also does not believe that Jamaal will be suspended or reprimanded for this incident, Coach Fisher will be handling the issue internally.