Pat Kelsey focuses on Newtown tragedy in post-game presser
Winthrop’s men basketball coach Pat Kelsey rocked the sports nation tonight in a press conference following Winthrop’s loss at Ohio State University.
The Eagles fell to the nationally ranked Buckeyes 65-55 but Kelsey used the microphone in the post-game press conference to offer up powerful charges in response to a mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. which left 20 children and six administrators dead.
The following is a transcript from Kelsey’s post-game speech:
“The last thing I wanna say is I’m really, really lucky, ’cause I’m gonna get on an eight-hour bus ride, and I’m gonna arrive in Rock Hill, S.C., and I’m gonna walk into my house, and I’m gonna walk upstairs, and I’m gonna walk into two pink rooms, OK, with a 5-year-old and a 4-year-old la
ying in that pink room, with a bunch of teddy bears laying in that room.
“And I’m gonna give them the biggest hug and the biggest kiss I’ve ever given them. And there’s 20 families in Newtown, Conn., that are walking into a pink room with a bunch of teddy bears with nobody laying in those beds. And it’s tragic.
“And I don’t know what needs to be done. I’m not smart enough to know what needs to be done, OK? I know this country’s got issues. Is it a gun issue? Is it a mental illness issue? Or is it a society that has lost the fact, the understanding, that decent human values are important?
“And our leaders – I didn’t vote for President Obama. But you know what? He’s my president now. He’s my leader. I need him to step up. Mr. Boehner, the Speaker of the House, he’s a Xavi
er guy, he’s a Cincinnati guy, OK, he needs to step up.
“Parents, teachers, rabbis, priests, coaches, everybody needs to step up. This has to be a time for change. And I know this microphone’s powerful right now, because we’re playing the fourth-best team in the country. I’m not going to have a microphone like this the rest of the year, maybe the rest of my life.
“And I’m going to be an agent of change with the 13 young men I get to coach every day an
d the two little girls that I get to raise. But hopefully things start changing, because it’s really, really disappointing.
“I’m proud to grow up American. I’m proud to say I’m part of the greatest country ever. And that’s got to stay that way. And it’ll stay that way if we change. But we gotta change.”
Kelsey encouraged all those listening to stand up for a change. “I know this microphone’s powerful right now because we’re playing the fourth-best team in the country,” Kelsey said. “I’m not going to have a microphone like this the rest of the year, maybe the rest of my life.”Kelsey did not use the press conference to blame any particular political party but instead admonished President Obama as well as House Speaker John Boehner to “step up.”
The Winthrop Eagles will be back in action against Auburn on Saturday, Dec. 22 at 8 p.m.
Watch the full video of Kelsey’s remarks here courtesy of rivals.com.