Metro Weekly

Monmouth U. basketball fans taunt rival player with photos and sign saying “Stick to Grindr”

Monmouth University President Patrick Leahy has promised to investigate the incident further

Monmouth basketball fans taunt a rival player from Siena – Photo: Pamela Banz, via Facebook.

The president of Monmouth University says he will investigate “highly offensive actions” that took place during a men’s basketball game against Siena College last Friday.

Following the game, students and spectators took to social media to post pictures and complain about students in the crowd who held up pictures from a Siena basketball player’s Tinder dating profile and a sign that read, “Stick to Grindr.”

Many observers took the reference to the popular gay dating app as a challenge to the Siena player’s sexual orientation.

Monmouth’s basketball team ultimately lost the game to Siena, 86-72.

Monmouth University President Patrick Leahy sent out a memo to students and other members of the university community saying he had been “made aware of highly offensive actions by several members of our student body directed at players on the opposing team,” reports The Star-Ledger.

“Please be assured that we are working swiftly to gather additional details and to directly address the behavior with those involved,” Leahy said. “Discrimination of any kind will not be tolerated on this campus.”

Reports of the homophobic harassment caused outrage on social media, with people asking what punishment the students involved would face.

Pamela Benz, who posted a photo from the game on Monmouth’s Facebook page, asked: “Is this personal level of bullying and homophobia something Monmouth U should allow from their students?”

“So what is going to happen to the offending students?” Sean Sinclair tweeted in response to Leahy’s memo. “You’re a little vague on whether they’re going to be punished at all. Expulsion seems appropriate.”

“These students need to be expelled from Monmouth University and held accountable for their actions,” Alex Pesacarino, an openly gay college student, tweeted. “The player could have lifelong overall health effects due to their harassment. They need to understand that everything they do will have consequences.”

Pretty disappointing unsportsmanlike homophobic behavior that diminishes the educational experience @monmouthu,” Gene Hunt tweeted. “Perhaps an internship at @outsports might help. Identify these specific students & hold them to account for their hateful, cruel & unkind behavior. @NCAA listening?”

A spokeswoman for Siena College told Men’s Variety that the school is waiting on the findings from the Monmouth investigation before getting involved.

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John Riley is the local news reporter for Metro Weekly. He can be reached at jriley@metroweekly.com

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