The University of Memphis women’s basketball player facing an assault charge from a post-game incident last week entered a plea in the case on Wednesday.
Jamirah Shutes pleaded not guilty to assault in connection with the March 23 incident after Memphis lost to Bowling Green State University in the Women’s National Invitational Tournament, according to WMC-TV in Memphis.
In the incident, characterized as an “ugly, ugly scene” that took place after the 73-60 win by Bowling Green, the Memphis guard met Bowling Green guard Elissa Brett in the handshake line. After a brief conversation, it appeared that Shutes threw a punch at Brett’s face, causing the latter to fall toward the scorer’s table.
BGSU women’s basketball moving on to the final 8 of the WNIT after beating Memphis — but this will steal the headlines unfortunately.
Ugly, ugly scene in the handshake line. A Memphis player punched Elissa Brett. Just brutal. pic.twitter.com/2hptXYBEtj
— Jordan Strack (@JordanStrack) March 24, 2023
According to the incident report filed by university police, Shutes is accused of striking “a member of the BGSU basketball team in the face with a closed fist,” the Memphis Commercial Appeal reported.
“The BGSU basketball player did sustain some swelling in their right eye due to this strike,” the incident report said, according to the Commercial Appeal.
Shutes and Brett had a brief history earlier in the game, the Appeal reported.
With 24 seconds left in the first quarter, Brett was called for a foul against Shutes.
In the incident, Bowling Green player Sophie Dziekan appeared to strike Shutes in the face while going for the ball. Shutes left the game for an injury and did not return until the third quarter, USA Today reported.
The Bowling Green State University Police Department on Friday said Schutes had been charged with assault after an “unwarranted physical incident,” according to Fox News.
The University of Memphis athletic department has distanced itself from Shutes, who was playing her final game for the school, according to WMC.
“The incident that occurred following Thursday’s women’s basketball game was extremely unfortunate and certainly not consistent with, or representative of, our expectations for our programs and student-athletes. Because the incident occurred after the game, jurisdiction falls in the hands of local authorities, and we are cooperating fully with their process. To be respectful of that process, we will not comment further until it is complete,” the statement said.
Twitter was not short on commentary.
Let me guess Schutes will say her disgusting cowardly behavior was in response to a racist comment….would bet a lot on it.
— onelife (@onelifegoodwill) March 25, 2023
Had it been Brett who sucker punched Schutes, the MSM would have been frothy with “White Birthing Person College Basketball Player Punches Black Birthing Player in Apparent Racist Attack.”
As it is, this will get memory-holed.https://t.co/wcnfPCFzUO
— THE OCpatriot™ (@OCpatriot_) March 24, 2023
I’m waiting for #WhiteHouse press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre to announce that #Memphis basketball’s Jamirah Shutes (charged with assault after throwing a punch in handshake line) will have lunch with #JoeBiden pic.twitter.com/uClpfTIFAr
— GeorgeCantStandYa (@stand_george) March 24, 2023
@jamirahshutes to be Charged and arrested for Felony Assault on Bowling Green’s Elissa Brett , BGSU Police Spokesman said this afternoon. Surprised @TigersAthletics didn’t remove her from the team immediately,
Completely Disgraced herself and team #WNIT @elissabrett pic.twitter.com/dcgCsioV7Z
— Tyler Smith aka DJTylerT (@djtylert) March 24, 2023
Bowling Green’s statement noted that “Violence is never acceptable, and our priority remains the health, safety and support of our student-athlete, who is recovering and doing well. This is an active investigation in conjunction with the City of Bowling Green Prosecutor, and no further comment is available at this time,” according to Fox News.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.