Nothing upsets Buzz Williams like a basketball player who doesn't properly show his respect during the national anthem. So entering this basketball season, he decided to teach his players a lesson -- one that would impress upon them the significance of that song and country it represents.
According to a video posted to Facebook, Williams lined up his players across from a row of veterans who served in the armed forces. His goal: To give his players human faces to think of when they hear the national anthem before basketball games.
The message has resonated with basketball fans as well as his players.
Virginia Tech Athletics - Patriotism
Kudos to Coach Buzz Williams, VT Basketball Coach. Given the ignorance or disrespect evidenced by most of today's athletes during our National Anthem, he decided to "have a talk with his players”. All coaches need to do something like this with their players!Coach Buzz Williams, VT Basketball Coach Don’t you wish all college coaches would do this? In a few years, there would a re-birth of patriotism on college campuses!
Posted by Changing the Game Project on Sunday, March 6, 2016
"These guys, when they were you age, interrupted their life, they paused their education, they changed their career, and they gave their life for those chairs," Williams says in the video. "So when the anthem is played, we're going to stand like grown men and we're going to honor men like this, that gave their life, so we can have a chair to sit in."
Williams then told his players they would be expected to stand during the anthem, paying tribute to veterans and to the liberties afforded by the United States.
Merely watching the video feels like a call-to-action. Kudos to Williams for using his basketball program to impart valuable lessons on his students.