USA Basketball head coach Gregg Popovich is a huge fan of Colin Kaepernick. He recently stated how the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick did a “very patriotic thing” by basically sacrificing his career to shed light on racial inequality in this country.
Kaepernick became a household name and controversial figure in 2016 when he began kneeling during the playing of the National Anthem. He hasn’t appeared in an NFL game since the end of that season as many believe he has been blackballed.
“Patriotism means a lot of things to different people,” Popovich said, according to ESPN.com. “There’s people who are truly committed in that sense and people who are fake. The show of patriotism I think is a bit inappropriate and that is not something that I think we want to emulate. Because someone hugs a flag doesn’t mean they’re patriotic. Being a patriot is somebody that respects their country and understands that the best thing about our country is that we have the ability to fix things that have not come to fruition for a lot of people so far.”
Kaepernick would soon file a grievance and sue the National Football League in 2017, stating the league’s owners were colluding to keep him out of the league because of his stance. That lawsuit was settled in February 2019.
“To negate that part of what we’re able to do is ignorant on anybody’s part who tries to make those people look unpatriotic,” Popovich said. “Like a Kaepernick. That was a very patriotic thing he did. He cared about his country enough to fix some things that were obvious, that everybody knows about but does nothing about.”