GREENVILLE, S.C. — A large Confederate flag is flying from the top of a parking garage next to the arena that’s hosting two men’s NCAA tournament second-round games Sunday evening.
The flag is being flown by a small group of protesters, according to the Associated Press, which arrived Sunday morning and plans to say throughout the games Sunday night.
Protesters said they hoped to make their presence known to the NCAA, which lifted its ban against the state of South Carolina last year because the Confederate flag no longer flies at the statehouse.
The NCAA released the following statement in response:
“The NCAA is proud and excited to host championships in the state of South Carolina once again,” Dan Gavitt, the NCAA senior vice president of basketball, said in a statement. “We are committed to assuring that our events are safe and accessible to all. No symbols that compromise that commitment will be permitted to be displayed on venue property that the tournament controls. Freedom of speech activities on public property in areas surrounding the arena are managed by the city of Greenville and we are supportive of the city’s efforts.”