South Carolina sports fans have a reason to rejoice today. Since 2001, the NCAA has placed sanctions on South Carolina for flying a confederate flag over their Statehouse grounds. The sanctions prevented the state from hosting any NCAA playoff or regional event during that time. For fourteen years, South Carolina has missed the opportunity to host NCAA tournament games, ACC playoffs, SEC regionals, and bowl games because of this flag. Today, after an overwhelming vote in the South Carolina House of Representatives, the flag has come down and the sanctions have been lifted.
“The NCAA strongly supports today’s removal of the Confederate flag from the South Carolina State House grounds. This step sends an important message of respect for and dignity of every person. As a national association, the NCAA opposes this symbol of racism, and since 2001 we have demonstrated our opposition by not playing pre-selected championships in states where the flag was flown prominently. The removal of the Confederate flag now means that South Carolina can bid to host future NCAA championships.”
While this is a promising move forward for the state, South Carolina will not see any immediate results. NCAA basketball regional events have been booked up through 2018 while baseball postseason events have been reserved for the near future as well. Good things take time, and when they first do host an event in South Carolina, be it USC’s Colonial Life Arena or Clemson’s Memorial Stadium, it will be a historic day.
This is a positive sign for growth and progress for not only South Carolina but for the United States. Each state is representative of this country and the more united we are in our vision to embody equality and freedom, the brighter our future becomes.
*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY