Oklahoma State running back Chuba Hubbard addressed the controversy surrounding coach Mike Gundy and a picture that surfaced of him wearing a One America News shirt.
Hubbard initially tweeted his displeasure with Gundy before the two eventually met and released a joint video statement on the issue. On Tuesday, Hubbard released a longer statement on the issue.
“I will start by saying this; I was never wrong for saying what I said. I am a man, and I realized I should have went to him as a man face to face rather than on Twitter. That’s my opinion. But I had to hold him accountable either way. I am glad things happened the way they did because things are being changed as we speak,” he wrote in a statement posted on Twitter.
“If anyone truly knows me, they know I am a very passionate person. I care about my family, friends, teammates and people I don’t even know. I spoke out because I am emotionally drained and I’m tired of seeing stuff happening without results or consequences. I realize I have a platform to generate change and I am trying my best to use it accordingly.”
He continued: “I am a young black man that wants change. I want change that will bring a better experience for my black brothers and sisters at Oklahoma State. It’s that simple.”
Hubbard vowed that he will try to bring change “EVERYDAY” to the school and the world.
He added that “good will come from this.”
The controversy started on Monday after a photo appeared to show Gundy in a One America News shirt.
“I will not stand for this.. This is completely insensitive to everything going on in society, and it’s unacceptable,” Hubbard wrote on Twitter. “I will not be doing anything with Oklahoma State until things CHANGE.”
Since taking over the program in 2005, Gundy had a 129-64 overall record with one Big 12 title. He recently described the controversial content of OAN as “refreshing.”
A few hours later, Hubbard posted a video of himself with Gundy, and a caption that read: “Change is coming I promise you that.”
“In light of today’s tweet with the T-shirt I was wearing, I met with some players, and I realized it’s a very sensitive issue with what’s going on in today’s society,” Gundy said. “And so, we had a great meeting. And made aware of some things that players feel like that can make our organization, our culture even better than it is here at Oklahoma State. And I’m looking forward to making some changes, and it starts at the top with me. And we got good days ahead.”
“I’ll start off by first saying that I went about it the wrong way by tweeting,” Hubbard added. “I’m not someone that has to tweet something to make change. I should have went to him as a man, and I’m more about action. That was bad on my part. But from now on, we’re going to focus on bringing change. And that’s the most important thing.”
Hubbard is the reigning Big 12 Offensive Player of the Year, and he could have been a top draft pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, but he decided to return to Oklahoma State for another season. Last year, he ran for 2,094 rushing yards and 21 touchdowns.
Gundy’s shirt reverberated across social media. ESPN college football analyst Paul Finebaum went as far as to say that Gundy should be fired.
“I thought the wrong person apologized. Chuba (Hubbard) is just expressing his frustration with his head coach in the middle of a national, international crisis, wearing a t-shirt of a network that I must admit I’ve never seen. But I’ve read enough about it,” he said on “Get Up.” “And a commentator of that network recently said that ‘black lives matter’ is a farce. So I can understand the frustration of the players. What I can’t understand is why Mike Gundy is allowed to continue to coach at Oklahoma State.”
Finebaum continued: “This is not his first rodeo. It’s not the first time that he has embarrassed or humiliated the university. I think the sooner Oklahoma State gets rid of Mike Gundy, the better it’s going to be for that school and especially the players who go out every Saturday and give their blood, sweat, and tears for that university.”
Fox News’ Dan Canova contributed to this report