UNC Football Virtue Signals With Latest Stunt

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North Carolina football unveiled their jerseys this morning against Notre Dame with the phrase “Protect Black Lives” and “Equality” on the back. Just when we thought virtue signaling in sports was on its way out the door–it’s back with a vengeance.

We imagine the athletic director would tell us that the players just want “to start a conversation,” but that’s not what these type of gimmicks do. So far, patches and logos have done nothing but separate the “sides” even further, making actual dialogue all but impossible. Patches and ribbons are a great way to show support for minorities around the world without having to actually do anything of substance.

It would be better if North Carolina’s football program threw a fundraiser for our minority communities. You know, actually do something to change the situation of these communities. However, it’s likely that change isn’t the end goal here. As in most cases of virtue signaling, Carolina is worried only about looking good, not doing good.

The pandering may never stop.

Written by Gary Sheffield, Jr

Gary Sheffield Jr is the son of should-be MLB Hall of Famer, Gary Sheffield. He covers basketball and baseball for OutKick.com, chats with the Purple and Gold faithful on LakersNation, and shitposts on Twitter. You can follow him at GarySheffieldJr


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  1. I usually disagree with you on the articles you write on the Astros and having amnesia on the Red Sox and Yankees mishaps, but I agree with you 100% on this article. Slogans and gestures does nothing to help minorities and it causes further tension between the fans and the athletes.

  2. Why are there no hockey articles? I love football. Not so much college football. What is this site about anymore? Sports? Or just politics? Yeah I know we get the Tom Brady commentary, he is showing his age and he has always been kind of a big whiner. All NFL fans know that about him. I signed up for some sports not mostly politics, which is what this has become. Give me some hockey articles. There are some great black players in the NHL also!

  3. I signed up when it was us against the coronabros. Then Whitlock joined and I love his commentary. But I want sports commentary not social media type reporting! That is all this site seems to be about anymore. Heck, it may have been that way too before I joined, but, I get it. My opinion doesn’t matter just like everyone else’s. Thought I joined to be part of something bigger than race and politics.

  4. I’m pretty sure Outkick wasn’t responsible for politicizing sports. Thank the sports leagues for that. This site would be illegitimate if it didn’t cover these issues. Nice to know what North Carolina did. Kept me from watching their nationally televised game today. If the school is serious, they should replace their coaches of all their major sports with blacks. And those faculty administrators? Respectfully resign and allow a black person to fill your position. Now, how you explain this to Native Americans, Mexican Americans, etc? Not sure. But good luck. As for hockey articles….what exactly would you like to see, Matt? I like hockey. But is there something going on in the world of hockey that is being ignored by this site?

    • No Brock. There is nothing news worthy in hockey. I want to just enjoy watching sports without all of the negativity surrounding it. I am disappointed that I got attacked for just having an opinion.

    • Brock, I agree, I wish some of these white liberals would resign and let a black person fill their position. And like you said, good luck explaining it to Native Americans, Mexican Americans, etc…. White liberals in Universities are the scum of the earth as far as I’m concerned.

  5. Apparently there is no fun anymore in sports. There is always an underlying issue in every sport, every game, every player/coach/staff. Young or old under the microscope. No matter what race, under the microscope. I understand Outkick is not responsible for the media microscope. I felt safe here sharing my comments

  6. These are the types of articles that separate Outkick from the others. I would like some hockey to replace the basketball once the season starts, but that’s just me.

    Regarding this piece, placing Protect Black Lives on the back of uniforms is patronizing garbage, red-lighted by guilt-ridden Triangle liberals who see blacks as their special needs little children who they must protect. That whole area is a cesspool of left-wing lunacy…spearheaded by the university administrators. It is also a kick in the nuts to most police officers who must deal with violent offenders in the community in order to protect the innocent, such as Jacob Blake’s girlfriend (who had a restraining order on him). Or the pregnant woman whom George Floyd felt the need to hold a gun to her belly while his buddies robbed her house. It seems UNC has decided who they side with. All NC law enforcement agencies should refuse to provide security to the circus which UNC athletics games have become (I’m assuming UNC basketball will get in on the political posturing once the season starts).

    • Paul, good post. …..Gary, good column. I agree with you Gary that patches and ribbons do nothing. It would be nice if athletes had a fundraiser or actually did something of substance. It seems all of athletics at every level is following the lead of the ridiculous NBA and fools like Lebron and Popovich. Since Lebron and Popovich don’t do shit except stir animosity, all of the other sheep don’t do shit either.

      Also, I loathe “Academia” more and more each day.

    • Not to mention the fact UNC created a fake curriculum to keep barely Literate athletes eligible rather than try and educate them. They epitomize the exploitation of black athletes in America with their actions while winking at you with “black lives matter” on the back of their jersey.

  7. If you listen to Clay’s radio show he makes no apologizes for being football centric. If you want to talk hockey you are most likely on the wrong site. Jr. is right as well. If athletes and athletic departments want to make a statement put their money where their mouth is. They have the financial resources to do some real good.

  8. Well, Matt, you’re more than welcome to comment on the covid NFL schedule change article. Personally, I wanted to comment on this article. However, if you’re looking for a bite, I’ll take the bait. I think Covid is a poor man’s pneumonia. I think these leagues are about as hypocritical as the Democrats who order businesses closed but believe protests and riots are essential. Now, Matt, I certainly hope you’re not some leftist, college journalist major, who is going Fletch, to try to get other members to shame you, so you can than try to suggest Outkick and its members are a bunch of right wing extremists who use cancel culture for those with opposing views. I’m getting that feeling. But I was wrong one time about 10 years ago, so it’s possible i could be wrong again. It”s just that you’ve made quite the splash here. Kind of like the new kid in school from “out of state” that wants to know on his first day where to buy the weed and where the big party will be this weekend. Anyways, how are those Canucks looking?

  9. The kids are being conned. They’re just pawns. But that being said, they are in college and could use a little free will to understand the bigger picture and form their own opinions, fairly and objectively. And then there are the parents…

  10. I used to love UNC when I went to a small liberal arts college in North Carolina many years ago. Have never liked ND but when I turned on that game yesterday and saw the slogans on the jerseys, I became a Irish fan for the day. Another example of cowardly, white liberal jerkoff administrators. Ever notice that Hispanics, Asians, Native Americans, and any other minority in this country don’t play the victim every chance they get? I wonder why it’s only blacks that always feel victimized.

  11. Meanwhile in Chicago, there have been 721 murders for the year as of 11/23. Of these victims, 78% are African-Amercan males. This was reported by ABC 7 in Chicago.

    Perhaps the courageous slogan makers from Chapel Hill should set up shop in Chicago.

    • Good point Jim. Did Senator Obama (from Illinois) or President Obama even attempt to help fix the disastrous problem in Chicago? We all know the answer. UNC will place slogans on their jerseys, but won’t touch addressing problems in cities such as Chicago, Detroit, Baltimore.
      Good column Gary. It created an interesting comment chain (to say the least).

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