Two days after Mississippi State football coach Mike Leach posted an offensive meme of an elderly woman knitting a noose, defensive tackle Fabien Lovett announced in a tweet that he will be transferring from the university, USA Today reports.
Leach’s tweet—which was captioned, “After 2 weeks of quarantine with her husband, Gertrude decided to knit him a scarf..”—has since been deleted, following a series of complaints from university players and professors.
Though Lovett did not say his decision was a response to the coach’s offensive meme, the redshirt sophomore had responded to the coach’s original tweet with “wtf,” USA Today notes.
MSU Assistant professor Margaret A. Hagerman also responded to the tweet by saying that “lynching ‘jokes’ are incredibly offensive anywhere...especially in Mississippi.” Needless to say, Mississippi has a long history of racially motivated hate crimes. With 79 percent of lynchings between 1882-1968 occurring in the South, Mississippi reigned supreme with the highest number of lynchings in that period.
Leach apologized for the post the next day in another tweet:
USA Today notes that Leach is not new to controversy. In fact, this is the second time in the past two months that the football coach has shared controversial tweets. Back in February, Leach posted—then deleted—a series of tweets critical of Utah Sen. Mitt Romney, the lone Republican who voted to remove President Trump from office during the impeachment trial.