West Virginia coach Bob Huggins apologizes for using anti-gay slur in radio interview
Hall of Famer referred to Xavier basketball fans Monday on a Cincinnati radio show
Longtime West Virginia men's basketball coach Bob Huggins apologized Monday afternoon after he used an anti-gay slur during an appearance on a Cincinnati sports radio show.
Huggins, in a statement released through the school, said he used "a completely insensitive and abhorrent phrase that there is simply no excuse for."
— WVU Men's Basketball (@WVUhoops) May 8, 2023
Huggins appeared Monday on "The Bill Cunningham Show," which airs on Cincinnati radio station 700WLW. Pretty shortly into the interview, Huggins was asked whether he had “poached any Xavier guys to come to West Virginia” in the transfer portal. Xavier, the private Catholic university, is located in Cincinnati.
“Catholics don’t do that,” Huggins quickly replied.
“Any school that can throw rubber penises on the floor and then say they didn’t do it, my god they can get away with anything.”
One of the show hosts then made a comment that it was “transgender night” at the game Huggins was referring to — which allegedly came when he was coaching at Cincinnati and Xavier fans threw sex toys onto the court.
That’s when Huggins used the anti-gay slur.
“What it was was all those f**s, those Catholic f**s, I think,” Huggins said. “They were envious they didn’t have one.”
Warning: This audio contains language that is NSFW
⚠️ Here’s the audio of Bob Huggins calling Xavier fans “Catholic f--s” during an appearance on Bill Cunningham’s WLW radio show in Cincinnati pic.twitter.com/JTftGx9rQE
— Awful Announcing (@awfulannouncing) May 8, 2023
The show hosts then closed the interview by laughing and saying Huggins was “the best.”
It's unclear what punishment Huggins will face, if any. The university said in a statement that the "situation is under review."
"There are consequences for our words and actions, and I will fully accept any coming my way," Huggins said in a statement. "I am ashamed and embarrassed and heartbroken for those I have hurt. I must do better, and I will."
Huggins, who was inducted last year into the Basketball Hall of Fame, has been at West Virginia since 2007. He has compiled a 345-203 record in his 16 seasons with the Mountaineers and been to the NCAA tournament 11 times. His team won the Big 12 tournament in 2010 and reached the Final Four that year. The Mountaineers went 19-15 last season and were knocked out of the NCAA tournament by Maryland in the first round.
Huggins got his coaching start at Akron in 1984. He spent five seasons there before jumping to Cincinnati, where he stayed for 16 seasons. The Bearcats went to 14 straight NCAA tournaments under Huggins and reached one Final Four in 1992. He then spent a season at Kansas State before landing in Morgantown.