Kansas State freshman point guard Angel Rodriguez, who grew up in Miami, got an earful from some members of the Southern Mississippi band during the two schools' match-up in the NCAA Tournament Thursday afternoon.
Late in the first half, while Rodriguez was shooting free throws after being fouled, chants of "Where's your green card?" could be heard from the band's section in the stands at the CONSOL Energy Center in Pittsburgh, PA.
Born in Puerto Rico, a commonwealth of the United States, Rodriguez is a U.S. citizen, a fact that escaped the band members. Rodriguez was raised in Miami and attended Dr. Krop High School.
Rodriguez got even with the Southern Miss band in the best way, scoring 7 points in the final 2:10, including five free throws, to help Kansas State win 70-64. He finished with 13 points and 4 assists.
In a statement released after the game, Southern Miss President Martha Saunders said, "We deeply regret the remarks made by a few students at today’s game. The words of these individuals do not represent the sentiments of our pep band, athletic department or university. We apologize to Mr. Rodriguez and will take quick and appropriate disciplinary action against the students involved in this isolated incident."
Rodriguez and Kansas State will face top seeded Syracuse University on Saturday for a spot in the Sweet Sixteen.