Following the June 1 announcement of its creation, the Big Ten announced the members of its Anti-Hate and Anti-Racism Coalition Monday.
The coalition includes student-athletes, coaches, athletic directors, chancellors and presidents from all 14 Big Ten institutions with the goals of seeking ways to combat racism while also empowering student-athletes to express their rights to free speech and protest. The coalition was first announced June 1 following the death of George Floyd, a black man who was killed by a Minneapolis police officer.
“We have the distinct opportunity and responsibility through our Coalition to continually encourage, educate and empower our student-athletes as we embrace transparent and much-needed dialogue regarding meaningful issues that have impacted race relations for many years,” Big Ten commissioner Kevin Warren said in a release.
Ohio State’s coalition representatives include athletic director Gene Smith, advisory commissioner Anthony White, sophomore football player Zach Harrison, senior track and field athlete Alexus Pyles, and four Ohio State coaches.
Around the conference, Michigan football coach Jim Harbaugh and Penn State football coach James Franklin represent their schools as members of the coalition.
The Big Ten also launched the Big Ten Voter Registration Initiative in an effort to encourage student-athletes to be active in the electoral process.
Beginning in July, monthly educational programs will teach student-athletes how to register to vote and the importance of exercising their civic duty, according to the release.
“We are at an inflection point in our country,” Warren said. “Empowering our student-athletes by encouraging them to use their voices illustrates how we can collectively work together to build a better future.”