College basketball coaches wear T-shirts with Brittney Griner’s name and painted image as South Carolina and Stanford band together to show support for the imprisoned WNBA star
Before top-ranked South Carolina got on the bus and left the Maples Pavilion after a blowout win over No. 2 Stanford, Don Staley asked the Gamecocks to send letters to Brittney Griner.
In the parking lot, a “Dear BG” table with an invitation to “Write a letter to Brittney Grenier” collected hundreds of handwritten letters.
Staley and assistant coach Lisa Boyer made sure to stop on Sunday, and took some time to write to Grenier. It was reported on Friday that the United States had not received a “substantial offer” on a prisoner exchange.
Staley and Hall of Fame Stanford coach Tara Vanderveer then wore white long-sleeved T-shirts with Griner’s name and a painted portrait and message on the back during South Carolina’s 76-71 overtime victory in a match between the two former NCAA champions.
“Tara is leading this campaign on this very campus and we both know Britney,” Staley said.
South Carolina coach Don Staley (right) and Stanford coach Tara Vandeverere (left) wore long-sleeved white T-shirts with Brittney Griner’s name and portrait painted on Sunday.
Greiner is serving a nine-year prison sentence for drug possession in a Russian penal colony
Two college basketball coaches unite with a message of support for the imprisoned WNBA star
She’s been part of our basketball family, and she’s in the fight of her life. I know there are other wrongfully held Americans and we obviously all want them to come home, but when you have a relationship and a friendship with someone, it’s personal.
“It’s a personal battle for us to get her home, and every little bit counts. Every little bit, every letter. If it’s a loved one, a loved one, she’ll fight for them. I think there’s a way maker out there that will get her a way home a lot sooner than I can.” So many people are anticipating it.I am one who will optimistically and prayerfully think she will be home soon.
A video message in support of Griner appeared on the big screen shortly before the information was received. Stanford wears “BG” patches on its uniform. Staley wore a “Free BG” hat.
Stanford has observed a minute’s silence for Grinier in every home game so far. Greiner, 32, is serving a nine-year prison sentence for drug possession in a Russian penal colony.
Steph Curry took a moment before the Golden State Warriors’ championship ring ceremony on opening night Oct. 18 — also Griner’s birthday — to draw attention to her cause and offer support.
Griner was transferred to IK-2 in Yavas, one of several penal colonies in the area, according to Reuters.
She was convicted on August 4 after Russian police said they found e-cigarette packets with cannabis oil in his luggage at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport. Her defense attorneys said she was prescribed marijuana for pain. The WNBA star said she packed it unintentionally and had no criminal intent.
The custom-made jerseys were presented by former Stanford star Jayne Appel-Marinelli.
“We’d say something every game, and a moment of silence with Brittney Grenier,” VanDerveer said.
Jayne Appel got me this shirt, same thing with Dawn, as she wanted to draw attention to a situation that was difficult for her to handle. Maybe there is someone in the stands who can help. We need to bring her home.
WNBA player Brittney Grenier has been taken into custody in Russia after officials found cannabis oil in her luggage at an airport near Moscow, according to a report in the New York Times on Saturday, March 5.