Students Tossed From Kansas High School Basketball Game For Chanting 'Airball'

Several students at a Kansas high school were ejected from the school's basketball game Tuesday night for chants deemed to be poor sportsmanship.

Not an obscene chant or gesture, nor a racial remark -- instead, it was a word that's commonplace in arenas across the country: "airball." Blue Valley Northwest High School did indeed eject students for chanting the phrase at a Blue Valley High School student-athlete, after he didn't hit net on a free throw attempt.

“A school administrator just came up and told us it was time to go, and we needed to get out,” ejected student Chris Daniel said Thursday, via FOX4 News. “I understand what they’re trying to do and enforce the rule so it’s a friendly environment, but at the same time, I think there needs to be some change."

You wouldn't believe it, but there's actually a stated rule that prohibits the chant of "airball." Per Kansas State High School Activities Association (KSHSAA) Rule 52, "airball" is one of the phrases that's labeled as poor sportsmanship.

Jeremy Holaday, KSHSAA Associate Executive Director, explained to FOX4 News why the rule is in place and why the chant warrants an ejection.

“If you can see something’s brewing here, something as simple as yelling "airball," can set this off to the next level, that could create even worse damage," Holaday said. "We have to be mindful of that and stop it as soon as we can."

The Blue Valley School District released its own statement defending the rule that's in place.

"Students, families and our community are an important part of the “game day” experience for our high school activities and athletics. We expect that our school communities represent themselves and our schools in a positive way during these events," the statement reads. "This includes following KSHSAA expectations around sportsmanship, as well as the common expectations for student sections that Eastern Kansas League student leaders agreed upon at a student summit this fall.”

Photo courtesy of KSN-TV in Wichita, Kansas.

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Nick Geddes is a 2021 graduate of the University of Central Florida with a bachelor’s degree in Journalism. A life-long sports enthusiast, Nick shares a passion for sports writing and is proud to represent OutKick.