Weeks after the national champion Clemson Tigers visited the White House and controversy was kicked up over the fast food meal served there, a new report says that most of the team’s black players decided to skip the meeting with President Trump.
The Tigers’ January 15 White House visit was already in the news after President Trump paid for a massive fast food feast out of his own pocket, since the White House food service staff was due to the government shutdown.
But now, The Root is claiming that “three-fourths” of the school’s black team members opted to skip the White House event.
There was no team-wide meeting or discussion about the visit, The Root said.
“It wasn’t like we had a team meeting or anything,” an anonymous black player told The Root. “Players were talking amongst each other, but everybody was like: ‘I’m not going to that.'”
The three players also said that many of those who didn’t go, including some white players, decided not to go because they opposed Donald Trump’s policies.
The Root further claims that only 15 of the total black players on Clemson’s roster went to D.C. with the team.
Clemson released a statement saying, “We had 76 student-athletes (approximately two-thirds of the team) make the trip to D.C. For a variety of reasons, several players were not able to adjust schedules to make the trip.”
Clemson associate vice president Joe Galbraith added that 26 players had already graduated and were no longer joining team events. “Other student-athletes had class obligations as the spring semester began the week prior,” Galbraith added.
The three black students who spoke to The Root stressed that no one at the school pressured students one way or the other on the topic of the White House visit. The decision was wholly up to the players.
One even joked that he would have changed his mind and went anyway if Trump had bought “Five Guys” hamburgers for the crew.
Thus far, this report is only sourced through The Root. Breitbart Sports will update the story if there are any independent verification of these claims.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.