UM athletics kneels, tennis stars share video in protest of racial injustice

MIAMI (WSVN) - The University of Miami’s athletic department has taken a knee to join demonstrators to demand justice and racial equality.

Players, coaches and staff across the department kneeled for eight minutes and 46 seconds inside the university’s indoor practice facility on Tuesday.

Men’s Basketball head coach Jim Larranaga showed his support in a social media post.

“Eight minutes & 46 seconds of silence today speaks volumes about the concern UM coaches, athletes and administrators have for the circumstances that created the need for protests & demonstrations. Let us pray,” he said in a tweet.

The time spent kneeling represents the exact time former Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin spent pressing his knee on George Floyd’s neck.

However, the university was not the only program showing solidarity towards the demonstrations.

Professional tennis player Frances Tiafoe, along with Serena Williams, Coco Gauff, Sloane Stephens and other tennis players, shared a video online with the initiative “Racquets Down, Hands Up” to spread awareness on racial discrimination around the world.

“We wanted to do a small gesture to spread awareness about the unjust deaths of many African Americans here in this country,” 2019 NCAA National Champion Ayan Bloomfield said.

“Today, we put our racquets down and our hands up,” Tiafoe said.

The video ends with #SayTheirName and features the names of people who fell victim to race-related violence.

As their names fill the screen, the video ends in a call to continue educating people, speaking out and for people to love one another.

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