As the sun grew high in the sky on a warm Friday morning in Norman, the Oklahoma football program began a march across campus.
Clad in black and arm in arm, dozens of players and staff walked to the Van Vleet Oval, where outside receivers coach Dennis Simmons offered an invocation and head coach Lincoln Riley made a public statement.
In light of recent events around the country, Riley took to the middle of campus at OU to express his support for his players.
“We don’t have all the answers,” Riley told media after the event. “The problems out there are real. As we discuss, we can’t come up with a better solution than unity.”
The south oval is considered the hub of university grounds, and with regard to the choice of location, Riley expressed the importance of being in a central venue.
“We are in this together. It’s going to take all of us seeing that. It’s about people being able to express their frustrations,” Riley said.
As racial division continues to plague the nation, the Oklahoma staff continues to implement numerous resources for their players. Riley acknowledged that he doesn't share the experiences of many of his players, but emphasized that he stands with them and is committed to fostering change.
“It’s not going to change overnight," Riley continued. "It’s about taking the positive steps. Why can’t this be the thing that brings us together? Our organization is made up of just about every different background. If all of the people in there can come together, why can’t that be done on a bigger scale?” Riley said.
SI Sooners will continue to provide updates to this developing story.
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