Georgia football player apologizes for ‘racially insensitive’ remarks

josh crawford-georgia football-running backs coach

Credit: Jason Getz / Jason.Getz@ajc.com

Credit: Jason Getz / Jason.Getz@ajc.com

The Georgia helmet is shown in advance for the head coaches news conference with Georgia coach Kirby Smart and TCU coach Sonny Dykes at the LA Airport Marriott, Sunday, Jan. 8, 2023, in Los Angeles. (Jason Getz / Jason.Getz@ajc.com)

ATHENS — Georgia football player Jamaal Jarrett issued a public apology for “racially insensitive remarks” he made while watching the NFL draft April 27.

A freshman defensive lineman from Greensboro, North Carolina, Jarrett was livestreaming on his Instagram account while watching the first round of the draft with teammates in the team locker room at the Butts-Mehre football facility. The Bulldogs were awaiting anxiously teammate Jalen Carter’s selection when an Asian mentee named Shane was introduced as a member of the Kansas City chapter of Big Brothers and Sisters of America and brought to the NFL commissioner’s podium to announce the Falcons’ first-round selection.

That’s when Jarrett shouted a slur usually directed toward Asians. The remark was later recast and condemned on other social-media platforms. The Falcons picked running back Bijan Robinson with the eighth pick, then Carter was selected by the Philadelphia Eagles with the next selection.

“I feel ashamed by my actions that have caused tremendous hurt and pain, especially to those in the AAPI community, and I truly do apologize,” Jarett wrote in a statement that was posted on his Twitter and Instagram accounts. “I did not mean any hate or harm towards anyone. I cannot change the mistake that I made, but I control what I do and say in the future and this is an opportunity for growth.”

AAPI is the acronym used by the federal government to describe “all people of Asian, Asian American or Pacific Islander ancestry who trace their origins to the countries, states, jurisdictions and/or the diasporic communities of these geographic regions.”

UGA has not commented on the incident.

Jarrett is a 6-foot-5, 350-pound defensive lineman who graduated from high school in December and was one of 18 early enrollees in Georgia’s recruiting class of 2023. A high school All-American, Jarrett was deemed as a 4-star prospect in the 247Sports Composite rankings.

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