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Wrestler Stripped of Scholarship Following 'Hate' Video

Paul Steinbach

Bronson Harmon has lost his scholarship to wrestle at California Polytechnic State University after a video surfaced showing the recent high school graduate shouting a homophobic slur during a pro-family march last month.

The university has not commented directly as to the reason for its decision regarding Bronson, a recent graduate of Oakdale (Calif.) High School who is captured on video addressing protestors at the June 30 Families Belong Together March in Modesto. Bronson is seen carrying a Donald Trump campaign sign from 2016 and giving cellphone videographer Abdul Lasaing the middle finger while shouting "[Expletive] you, [slur]." Harmon, who attended the rally with his father, was later cited and released in a separate incident in which he allegedly pushed a man he suspected of placing a screwdriver behind the tire of the elder Harmon's truck.

Bronson Harmon, who did not wrestle the second half of his senior season due to a dispute with his coach over weight class designation, was informed July 2 by Cal Poly wrestling coach Jon Sioredas that his scholarship would be revoked. "Harmon will not be a member of Cal Poly’s wrestling team, but we cannot comment on any details regarding his status as a student because of federal and state privacy laws," Cal Poly said in a statement to USA TODAY Sports.

“Saying what I said is definitely not the right thing. I am supposed to be there to help the community be the best person I can be and represent the college the best way I can,” Bronson Harmon told The Tribune of San Luis Obispo last week. “But I still feel like my freedom of speech was taken away, and I don’t think my scholarship should have been revoked over something like that.”

Harmon says he still intends to attend Cal Poly in the fall and will switch his focus to mixed martial arts. “I got accepted, and they said I am welcome still,” he said. “It’s just that they can’t be bringing all this publicity to athletics, so I can’t be involved with athletics.”

Lasaing, who attended the march to protest the Trump administration's zero-tolerance immigration policies, told USA Today Sports that he has received death threats since posting the video. "I never thought my video would get this far for him to lose his scholarship," Lasaing stated in a Facebook message. "I didn't know about his scholarship or even know who he was until recently when people starting noticing him. I do believe he needs help with his racism and homophobic hate. I am sure he's a good person just raised with hatred."

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