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TCU football player sparks making of ‘End Racism’ mural

TCU students sign to show their support at the “End Racism” mural Aug. 7, 2020. (Photo by Jack Wallace.)

Days after taking part in the “End Racism Now” mural in downtown Fort Worth, offensive guard Kellton Hollins approached top university officials with an idea inspired by his experience.

Hollins shared his thoughts with Chancellor Victor Boschini and Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Jeremiah Donati in an email he sent as soon as he woke up June 29. In the message, he asked about creating a statement on TCU’s campus similar to the one downtown.

And as Donati said in last week’s town hall meeting, he and Boschini thought that was “a wonderful idea.”

Signing his name on the Main Street mural, Hollins said, reflected his desire to participate in the fight against racism in the country.

“I thought it would be even more powerful and impactful to my fellow Black student-athletes if we as a TCU Athletics community displayed solidarity in the fight,” he said in an email.

TCU’s mural, located on the sidewalk on Frog Alley, was unveiled Aug. 6. Hollins said this location was chosen because it sits between the athletic and academic sides of campus.

Hollins said he has been working to “bridge the gap” between students and student-athletes at TCU, especially Black student-athletes, and the mural is a symbolic way to overcome this separation.

“But even more so, in this time we see people not standing up for student-athletes of color even though they stand up to cheer for us during games,” Hollins said. “If you cheer for us on the field, cheer for us off the field when we are fighting to end racism.”

Students, faculty and staff were invited to sign their name on the mural Friday. In doing so, they took a pledge to work toward ending racism.

“Racism has penetrated the roots of our country and has been a part of its history since the beginning. With the climate of today’s world, we must decide what we are fighting for. No longer will we stand for any form of racism. By signing what we are fighting, you are committing to standing in solidarity with those that have fought against racism for years. By signing your name, you are committing to educating yourself and others of the injustices in America. By signing your name, you are committing to taking action. We must END RACISM.” Kellton Hollins’ pledge.

Hollins said he hopes the mural will continue to encourage people to have the “hard and uncomfortable conversations especially when it isn’t trendy.”

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