ESPN's Ryan Clark breaks down on 'Get Up' while discussing racism directed at his son

Sporting News

Jordan Clark, a redshirt freshman cornerback at Arizona State and the son of retired NFL defensive back Ryan Clark, is one of three Sun Devils players who were called a racial slur Tuesday night while waiting for food at a Whataburger near ASU's campus.

Ryan Clark, who played 13 seasons for the Redskins, Steelers and Giants and is now an NFL analyst for ESPN, is simply happy his son is still alive.

Below is the account of the incident Jordan Clark posted on Twitter. He was at the Whataburger with Arizona State tight end Nolan Matthews and safety T Lee.

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"Tonight my teammates and I decided to get dinner from Whataburger. Due to the pandemic the inside was closed, and the drive through was the only way to get food. My teammate approached a car with a white woman in it, and asker her if she would mind ordering our food for us. We told her we'd pay, but she said she was in a hurry.

"So we waited for the next car, and asked a younger white guy to do it for us. He had no problem with it, and we gave him the money. We sat on the wall far away from the window, and waited. The woman that we asked initially eventually got to the window, and proceeded to roll her window down to ask what our problem was.

"We were sitting on the wall. She then filed a complaint with the manager saying that we harassed her, and he comped her meal. She then turned to us, and said in a vindicated voice; 'THANKS FOR THE FREE FOOD N—!' The store manager gave her the food, and she began to drive off while saying 'BYE N—.'

"The manager was unfazed. He didn't bat an eye, or think twice about what he had heard. He didn't apologize to us for it happening, or show any sympathy at all. He was quick to condemn us, and tell us we were wrong. Quick to threaten us, and say he'd call the police."

Ryan Clark on Friday was asked on ESPN's "Get Up" how he reacted to the incident his son encountered a few days prior.

Below is his powerful response.

Tuesday's encounter at Whataburger prompted statements from both the university and the restaurant's corporate office.

From ASU president Michael Crow: “We are aware of the situation our student-athletes reported happening (Tuesday) night at Whataburger where they were subjected to racist behavior and name calling by a customer. There is no excuse for this. It is a continuation of gross ignorance, racism and hatred that permeates facets of our society. We understand that Whataburger has stepped-up and requested more information. We strongly encourage Whataburger to fully investigate this situation and assess what steps it must take to deal with customers who exhibit this kind of behavior. It cannot be tolerated."

From Whataburger: "We condemn racism in any form and were horrified to hear how these customers were treated by another customer — this will not be tolerated. We are reinforcing training with our employee on how this incident was handled and have spoken with the customers and their families to apologize for this terrible experience."

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