Local high schools and colleges respond to NFL controversy - ABC FOX Montana Local News, Weather, Sports KTMF | KWYB

Local high schools and colleges respond to NFL controversy

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MISSOULA -

This story is capturing the attention of people across the nation and across Montana.

NFL football players are following Colin Kaepernick's lead and protesting racial inequality by taking a knee during the National Anthem at games.

Local high school and college football teams to see how they're reacting to the national protests.

This hasn’t been much of an issue at the University of Montana because college players are not on the field during the National Anthem.

Cooper Sprunk, offensive lineman at the University of Montana, said that everyone has a right to their freedom for speech.

But he said that he does wish the players who have chosen to take a knee would talk more about why they are doing that.

"I would support taking a knee for the most part. Because it’s not one guy doing it anymore. It's all of them together. So I think that is pretty cool," said Sprunk.

Justin Greene, Grizzly Assistant Coach, said that he just wants to focus on coaching football but he knows his players have opinions about this controversy but warns them about what they post on social media.

"Each player is their own individual person, so he has the opportunity to voice his own opinion. But we all know anything said on twitter will be taken for what it is and sometimes taken out of context. So we just tell our guys to be careful with anything they put on,” said Greene.

In high school football, players do line up before the game for the National Anthem.

Mick Morris, Hellgate Head Football Coach, said that his players have not brought this topic up at practice yet.

Morris said that yesterday he spoke with the Athletic Director and District Communications Specialist about how they would handle this situation.

"We would support them. I mean it is their first amendment rights. I would hope they would understand why they were taking it and if that was something that they felt strongly about then we would support them as a school and as a team," said Morris.

Morris said that they have not had a game since the NFL protests, but he said that he will support his players no matter what they decide to do as long as they are non-violent, peaceful protests.

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