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High School Basketball Announcer Tries to Blame Racist Remark on Blood Sugar Spike

In this weekend's Hot Clicks: A high school basketball announcer tries to blame his racism on diabetes, Nebraska looked into bailing out of a game in Norman and more.

Racist Sugar Spike

It’s not easy for a high school basketball announcer to land in the national spotlight. They must unleash an epic call of a full-court buzzer beater or say something idiotic, racist, homophobic, etc. Matt Rowan landed in the national spotlight on Friday. He didn’t unleash an epic call of a full-court buzzer beater.

Before a girls basketball game in Sapulpa, Okla., on Thursday night, Rowan, unaware the live-stream microphone was on, used a racial epithet to criticize players from Norman High School for kneeling during the national anthem.

“They’re kneeling? (Expletive) them. I hope Norman gets their ass kicked ... (Expletive) (epithet).”

You can fill in the parenthetical blanks. Rowan, the owner and operator of the streaming service OSPN, initially denied making the comments before blaming his racism on a sugar spike. Part of his statement:

“I am a family man. I am married, have two children and at one time was a youth pastor. I continue to be a member of a Baptist church. I have not only embarrassed and disappointed myself, [but] I have embarrassed and disappointed my family and my friends. I will state that I suffer Type 1 Diabetes, and during the game, my sugar was spiking. While not excusing my remarks, it is not unusual when my sugar spikes that I become disoriented and often say things that are not appropriate, as well as hurtful. I do not believe that I would have made such horrible statements absent my sugar spiking.”

Mayo Clinic lists frequent urination as a side effect of blood sugar spikes, along with fatigue, thirst, headaches and blurred vision. “Overt racism” seems to be missing. While Rowan’s apology wasn’t interrupted by a fastbreak, it was reminiscent of Thom Brennaman’s apology in August for his own hot mic incident in which he also played the “man of faith” card to explain homophobic remarks.

What About Uzbekistan?

Nebraska wanted to play football last year. They didn’t care about a challenging schedule, nor did they care where the games would be played after leading the Big Ten’s charge to restore the 2020 season.

“I don’t think beggars can be choosers,” Scott Frost said last October. “If they tell us we’re playing on a Thursday, we need to be ready to play on a Thursday. If it’s Sunday, it’s Sunday. And if it’s in Uzbekistan, we’re going to have to probably stop in a couple places on the way over there. Wherever and whenever we get to play, our guys are just excited to get a chance to compete.”

A Thursday game in Uzbekistan? Sign ‘em up. A Saturday game in Norman? Noooooooo, say the Huskers.

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Nebraska will visit Oklahoma in September for the first half of a home-and-home series that returns to Lincoln in 2022. Scheduled to honor the 50th anniversary of the Game of Century, it will be the first meeting between the former longtime conference foes since 2010. And the Huskers explored canceling the game, Stadium’s Brett McMurphy reported on Friday.

“Due to the economic devastation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic to Husker athletics and the local community, our administration did explore the possibility of adding an eighth home game this fall,” Nebraska athletics director Bill Moos said in response to the report. “That option would have helped us mitigate cost-cutting measures and provide a much-needed boost to our local economy. Ultimately, the decision was made to move forward with our game at Oklahoma in 2021. We have the utmost respect for the University of Oklahoma, and this storied rivalry, and I know our fans have been excited about this series for a long time.”

Maybe Moos is being honest; Nebraska, facing a $100-million budget hole, made some financially motivated phone calls. Or maybe they’re complaining (again) and know a 40-point beatdown in Norman isn’t great for a program stuck in futility.

March Madness Roundup

Updated list of automatic bids … This year’s bracket won’t be built as usual … Teams threatening to steal at-large bids … Latest March Madness bracket predictions… Reminder: This year’s tourney schedule is different … Kanas predicament shows there are no easy answers for staging March Madness during a pandemic … Remembering Jimmer Fredette Mania 10 years later … Sign up for SI’s Bracket Challenge.

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