Kentucky athletic director permanently bans fan who yelled racial slur at Tennessee fan

LEXINGTON, KY - FEBRUARY 23: General view of the interior of Rupp Arena during the Kentucky Wildcats and Auburn Tigers game on February 23, 2019 in Lexington, Kentucky. (Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images)
This Kentucky fan probably shouldn't plan on going to Wildcats games in the near future. (Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images)

University of Kentucky athletic director Mitch Barnhart tweeted on Thursday that they have “permanently revoked ticket privileges” to all Wildcats sporting events for the fan who was caught on video yelling a racial slur in response to taunts from a Tennessee fan at Rupp Arena on Tuesday night.

The female fan has since apologized.

Barnhart also tweeted that the fan in question is not a season-ticket holder, and that the recipient of the slur had received a personal apology.

The incident occurred in the wake of Tennessee’s road upset of No. 6 Kentucky, which blew a 17-point lead in the second-half against the Volunteers.

In the video, the fan can be seen exchanging words with a Tennessee fan as she walks up the Rupp Arena steps. After the Tennessee fan yelled “Why are you leaving?” the Kentucky fan responded by stopping and yelling the slur and walking away. There is a second video of the incident as well.

After the video was posted, a woman identifying herself as Ashley Lyles reached out to Lex18 and issued the following statement:

“My reaction after the game was unacceptable, period. It was against all values of the University and state of Kentucky. I humbly apologize to the individuals at which my words were directed," writes Lyles, "My words were hurtful and hateful and have no place in this world. I apologize to the University and state of Kentucky for the embarrassment I have caused. I want my apology not just to be in words, but in actions moving forward.”

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