Creighton University announced on Monday that it would lift its suspension on mens basketball coach Greg McDermott in connection with comments he made to players that included an analogy about plantations. 

Creighton Athletic Director Bruce Rasmussen said in a statement shared on Twitter that he and the Rev. Daniel Hendrickson, the university’s president, had held discussions with players and their parents, former student-athletes, recruits and other members of the university community regarding the incident. 

Let me be clear, the athletic director said. Coach McDermotts use of the plantation analogy was egregious and has absolutely no place in our society. His remarks have caused significant hurt to many on our campus and in our community.

Rasmussen added, however, that McDermott has demonstrated a commitment to grow, citing ” his immediate apology, ownership of his actions, difficult dialogue with his team and more. 

A statement from Creighton Athletic Director Bruce Rasmussen regarding the Creighton Mens Basketball Program:

Creighton University (@Creighton) March 8, 2021

Guys, we got to stick together. We need both feet in. I need everybody to stay on the plantation, McDermott reportedly told players during a team huddle during a Feb. 27 game.

“I cant have anybody leave the plantation, he added.

McDermott late Monday responded to the decision to lift his suspension, writing in a statement on Twitter, I am grateful for the opportunity to return to all team activities and rejoin our incredible student athletes, coaches and staff. 

I fully understand and recognize that this does not mark the end, but rather the beginning of my work in learning, growing and earning back the trust of those that I have hurt,” he added. “I am committed to doing better.

This is a start.

Coach McDermott (@cucoachmac) March 9, 2021

Rasmussen said that McDermott will be participating with other campus leaders in a program from the universitys Racial Equity Institute that is designed to develop the capacity of participants to better understand racism in its institutional and structural forms.

Coach McDermott is eager to participate in this and other important programs and activities, and recognizes that this is a critical next step in our collective learning process, he wrote.

Rasmussen also said that he “witnessed the courage of our student-athletes when they used their voices to share their true feelings about last weeks remarks, referring to a video from players shown before the Butler game on Saturday.