Colorado HC Tad Boyle: Boulder Shooting Was 'Another Senseless Act of Violence'

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistMarch 23, 2021

Colorado head coach Tad Boyle hugs McKinley Wright IV as he heads to the bench near the end of his teams 71-53 loss to Florida State during the second half of a second-round game in the NCAA college basketball tournament at Farmers Coliseum in Indianapolis, Monday, March 22, 2021. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
Charles Rex Arbogast/Associated Press

Colorado men's basketball coach Tad Boyle called Monday's mass shooting in Boulder, Colorado, where the school's campus is located, "another senseless act of violence."

Boyle opened his postgame press conference with a statement discussing the shooting after the Buffaloes' 71-53 loss to Florida State in the second round of the 2021 NCAA tournament in Indianapolis:

"First of all, before we talk about this basketball game, I thought about this in the locker room before the game, how the events that took place in Boulder, Colorado, today—and I don't have any details other than to know it was a tragic, tragic situation. It puts basketball in its proper place.

"And win or lose tonight, I just felt an emptiness in my stomach. Another senseless act of violence that we've experienced as a country many, many times. And so it puts this game in perspective. It certainly puts losing in perspective.

"But even if we would have won this game and celebrated going to the Sweet 16, it would have put a damper on it. So my heart goes out to the families that were affected and those that lost their lives."

CNN's Madeline Holcombe reported 10 people were killed when a shooter opened fire inside a King Soopers grocery store. Police said a suspect was in custody but didn't provide any details or a possible motive.

Boyle explained the coaching staff and members of the team started to receive news about the shooting shortly before their game against FSU, but they decided not to discuss it given the limited information initially:

"I talked about it with a couple of my assistants and we felt like it was probably better left—we didn't have any details. There wasn't anything really to talk about, and I talked about it after the game, again, in the perspective standpoint.

"But your team's mental mindset as they prepare for a game, it's sometimes fragile. I didn't want to complicate their minds too much because we had to go play the game. We weren't going to not play the game. So I decided to wait till after the game to address it with them, and I did."

Colorado senior guard McKinley Wright IV said the situation weighed heavily on him:

"I thought about my life and growing up and what I've been through and seeing these people. And what they have to go through now, it sucks. I'm so sorry, and I'm going to pray for their families.

"Basketball is just a game; people lost their lives. That sucks. It's hard to kind of put that in words right now coming off of playing my last game here at CU and that tragedy that went on down in Boulder, it's just terrible."

The Buffaloes, who defeated Georgetown in the first round of March Madness, finished their season with a 23-9 record.