University of Rhode Island investigating racist Instagram message aimed at Dolphins' Emmanuel Ogbah

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SOUTH KINGSTOWN, R.I. — The president of the University of Rhode Island has condemned a racist social media post allegedly made by a student and aimed at an NFL player.

URI is investigating the post, which occurred on Instagram on Sunday after an NFL game between the Miami Dolphins and the Jacksonville Jaguars and has since been taken down.

The post has since been taken down, as has a tweet by Dolphins defensive lineman Emmanuel Ogbah, who shared the message that had been aimed at him, according to sports websites.

"I normally ignore stuff like this but this is uncalled for!" Ogbah wrote in his post.

A URI spokesman said Tuesday that the university became aware of the post allegedly sent by a student to a member of the Dolphins. David Lavallee said it contained objectionable and racist language, but would not comment further.

Emmanuel Ogbah of the Miami Dolphins was apparently the target of racist abuse from a URI student.
Emmanuel Ogbah of the Miami Dolphins was apparently the target of racist abuse from a URI student.

Kathy Collins, vice president of student affairs, said the university is unable to share any more information about the student pending the results of the investigation.

URI’s president, Marc B. Parlange, quickly sent out a statement to the college community that said, “the university learned today of an offensive, unacceptable and racist comment posted to social media earlier today, allegedly by one of our students. This language is abhorrent and has no place in a community that is deeply committed to anti-racism.

“Given the significance of the issue, the university has taken immediate action and referred the matter to the university’s student conduct process for review.”

Collins said the person in question is allowed to accept responsibility for his or her action. If not, a hearing is held, which can involve a panel of university members that will determine whether any policies were violated.

Sanctions can range from a warning to expulsion.

Mary Grace Almandrez, URI’s chief diversity officer, said her office has invited all students to contact her department if they need counseling or any other types of support.

“We heard that students appreciated that our most senior leader issued a statement so quickly,” she said. “They understood this was a campus [that] took these kinds of things seriously.”

This article originally appeared on The Providence Journal: Racist post aimed at Dolphins' Emmanuel Ogbah being investigated