At 2-5 the University of Maine Black Bears have their work cut out for them on the court today as they visit Duke, sitting at 7-1 and ranked No. 5 in the nation. So it's not a crucial game or doesn't seem like it will be. The Maine team has ever made it the NCAA tournament, but they have played against some great teams, Duke, being one of them.
Maine will travel to North Carolina to play against Duke at Cameron Indoor Stadium.
The significance of the trip to the state that has enacted the anti-LGBT HB2 law was not lost on the school, the America East Conference or head coach Bob Walsh. While other teams and sporting events have pulled out of the state, the Black Bears are going at it from a different direction.
On Thursday the team met virtually with trans athlete and activist Chris Mosier, whose success in the duathlon in particular has driven policy changes across sports and created awareness of trans issues, particularly in sports. Mosier is part of the You Can Play project, which has a partnership with America East (of which Maine is a member). – outsports.com
“This is a great opportunity for the athletes to step up as leaders,” Mosier said. “I really appreciate that they are turning this into an educational opportunity and an opportunity to be active allies to the LGBTQ community.”
Walsh called Mosier’s interactions with his team “tremendous” on Twitter. In addition to the conversations with Mosier, the team will also meet with an LGBT student group while they are at Duke. – outsports.com
Good luck today, Maine. GO BLUE! Or should we yell GO RAINBOW!
I think it's very impressive that Maine has taken the initiative to educate their athletes about HB2, LGBT rights, and what is going on. We often forget that these athletes are students and they are receiving an education while they are bouncing the balls around the courts raising big money for their schools.
Some may say, well, Maine's going to get attention today for their shirts, not their ball play. I'm okay with that. If a team of testosterone filled boys that are usually surrounded by and submerged in a super-masculine environment can learn more about discrimination while playing a sport they love, more power to UMAINE for doing so.
The game will be broadcast on ESPN2 at 5:30 EST today, December 3rd.
The [HB2] law has caused ramifications in other sporting events in the state. In February, the NBA decided to move its All-Star Game from Charlotte to New Orleans. In September, the ACC decided to move all neutral-site conference championship games out of North Carolina. The NCAA also moved seven championship events this academic year from North Carolina, including the first and second rounds of the 2017 NCAA men's basketball tournament. – espn.com