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Popovich discusses panel with Cornel West for students in San Antonio

AT&T CENTER – Sunday, a panel consisting of San Antonio Spurs Head Coach Gregg Popovich and Scholar and Activist Dr. Cornel West spoke to a group of students in San Antonio.

Details of the assembly were made known by Dave Zirin of EdgeofSports.com on Twitter Sunday.

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Before the Spurs faced the Dallas Mavericks on Monday, Popovich provided more details about why the panel was assembled and he mentioned that some of the Spurs’ players attended the event as well. The full quote from Popovich is provided below.

“That’s about the kids. In today’s environment, one could talk a good game about ‘we need this or we need that or we need fewer disparaging remarks or we need more attention to healing the atmosphere for a lot of minority groups – whether it’s racial or things that have been said about women or handicap people.’ Any such talk is just talk but at some point there’s got to be follow through where people are engaged, so we were fortunate to have Cornel West actually come to San Antonio and be our not just speaker, but our player so to speak. He worked with us for about three or four hours, I can’t remember exactly, with a couple of hundred students, with some people here in the city and of course the players and their wives, that sort of thing. The purpose of it was to show the kids that even though the environment is as it is – we’ve heard some pretty rough talk through the election that there are people, many people at all levels who value them greatly and they don’t need to be as fearful or feel less than because we know who they are, we depend on them for the future. I’m not that big on adults, the kids for obvious reasons, the kids are where we’ve got to go and they were fantastic. They’ve been working for the last couple of weeks (preparing) questions and learning about who Cornel West is and what he’s done, what’s he’s written, that sort of thing. And we just had basically like a little town hall for the kids and they asked all the questions, it was about them, so it hit the gamut. It wasn’t all just about race in America or anything like that, it was about sports and economics and police community relations and of course that was pretty poignant considering the tragedy we had losing a police officer through just horrible violence. But, that’s what it was all about and the kids were great. It was as simple as that. We just wanted to be there for them so they know that we want to interact with them and that a lot of people care.”

According to CornelWest.com, West is a Democratic Intellectual, who is a Professor of Philosophy and Christian Practice at Princeton University.

Photo: WGBH News