A week after Vanderbilt Commodores’ defensive backs coach Dan Jackson posted on Facebook that Ye (formerly known as Kanye West) was “two steps ahead of everyone,” Vanderbilt has asked Jackson himself to “step back” from his job. That’s after Jackson deleted his initial Facebook post and posted an apology to Twitter, but also after he coached as normal in the Commodores’ 38-27 loss to the South Carolina Gamecocks Saturday. Here’s the initial post, screenshotted by the Stop Antisemitism group on Twitter last Thursday afternoon:
We are extremely concerned to see Vanderbilt University's Assistant Football Coach – Dan Jackson – defend Kanye West's antisemitism on a Facebook thread, stating people need to wake up.
Wake up to what exactly? Kanye's ongoing peddling that Jews control the world?! pic.twitter.com/473Dr6p8Ww
— StopAntisemitism (@StopAntisemites) November 4, 2022
Those comments from Jackson came amidst countless corporations and teams dropping West following his antisemitic remarks over a period of weeks, including a threat of “I’m going death con 3 On JEWISH PEOPLE.” Here’s a transcription of what Jackson posted:
“Kanye is two steps ahead of everyone. He’s not crazy. People try to silence him because he thinks for himself. People don’t want that. Rappers and athletes are taught they need to think the same as the media/politicians. If they have an opinion that is opposite the mainstream, they’re called crazy. More people need to wake up and speak their mind.”
After the Stop Antisemitism group posted Jackson’s comments, Jackson offered an apology on Twitter six hours later:
— Dan Jackson (@CoachDtjackson) November 5, 2022
On Monday night, Vanderbilt put out a couple of statements on Jackson, including one from chancellor Daniel Diermeier and two vice-chancellors:
Vanderbilt chancellor Daniel Diermeier issued statement with two vice chancellors on Dan Jackson review: pic.twitter.com/BQq9pqHN4B
— Robbie Weinstein (@rwweinstein) November 8, 2022
Here’s that referenced athletic department statement from Vanderbilt athletic director Candice Lee. A key part:
There have been several questions and concerns expressed about a recent comment made by our defensive backs coach, Dan Jackson, on social media. As a department we understand and hear very clearly how this situation has impacted members of our community and those outside of Vanderbilt. Our internal review of the matter began immediately over the weekend, and I now want to provide an update.
To be clear, Vanderbilt rejects antisemitism, racism and discrimination in all its forms. Consistent with Vanderbilt’s process for addressing reports of discrimination, the matter has now been referred to our Equal Opportunity and Access office for review. It is important the university follow its standard process and conduct a thorough review of the complexities of this incident.
Coach Jackson and I have agreed that he will step back from his responsibilities with the team during the Equal Opportunity and Access office’s review.
It seems to make some sense to remove Jackson from his role with the football team while this review process plays out. But it’s interesting that this situation broke two days before a game and wasn’t handled beyond the initial apology until after the game.
[The Associated Press; photo from Christopher Hanewinckel/USA Today Sports]