Randall Cobb apologized Tuesday for a controversial statement that he posted on his Twitter feed on Sunday following Kentucky's 31-28 win over No. 10 South Carolina.
"First off, I just want to start off by saying I made a mistake. I did. I messed up," Cobb said. "I take blame for everything I said. I know I was wrong. I was wrong for the fact that I took a small percentage of our fan base and lumped them all as one and made it all whole. That's not how our fans are. Ninety-nine percent of our fans are great fans. And they know that. They've been there supporting us throughout the years. I took a small chunk and made it something big, and I can't do that. I made a mistake, I'm a man, I admit my mistake, and I just want to let everybody know that I'm sorry, and I hope they can forgive me."
The following statement appeared on Cobb's Twitter account on Sunday:
"To all the fans: loved seein Yall come late, love hearing Yall tell us we suck during the game, love that we have to play against our own fans too! Love that we can't pack the house when we play the #10 team in the nation. It means that much more to me. I love my team! Brotherhood they got my back n I got they back. The rest of Yall can get ready for bball season! Don't say u support n do all those things! Yeah I'm level 9 pissed ... so deal w it! Not blaming all but Yall know who I'm talking abt- Yall know I love #bbn (Big Blue Nation) but something needed to be said."
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Later in the day, he deleted the post and replaced it with the following: "To all the fans that has been true to this program throughout the years. Yall deserved a win like that last night! Let's keep it going!"
Cobb said he realized two to three minutes after sending the tweet that he had made a mistake.
"It didn't take nobody from the media calling me; none of my coaches called me, nothing like that," he said. "It was my decision to take it down. I knew it was wrong from the beginning. Right after I sent it, I had to take it back. I was out of character. I really was. I just hope that everybody can forgive me."
In reference to the part of his tweet that said, "The rest of Yall (UK fans) can get ready for bball season," Cobb made it clear that he had no problem with the basketball team
"They know I have more respect for them than anybody," he said. "I hang out with half those guys. I've been over there to talk to Coach Cal. I have so much respect for that program. I'm trying to make this a program that's similar to that one and try and have a football/basketball school. That's what my intentions are. That's what my goals are. It has nothing to do with them."
Cobb said he was surprised that his words carried so much weight, as news of his tweet spread around the state within minutes of its being posted. He added that the power of words has been a topic in a communication class he's taking.
"We've been talking all semester about how powerful words are," Cobb said. "I can't take my words. I can't take back what I said. All I can ask for is forgiveness. I understand that I can inspire other people and my words can mean a lot, but I didn't realize they meant so much. I realize that now, and it's a lesson learned, and I have to move on with life. I hope everybody else can."
Cobb said his original intention was to point out that players are aware of the fans' behavior in the stadium, particularly when things aren't going well.
"We know what's going on," he said. "We can hear you. Regardless of whether we respond or not, we can hear you. We know what's being said, and it hurts sometimes. It really does. But we've just got to keep playing, keep pushing on and try to finish out the season."
Kentucky Coach Joker Phillips said he has no plans to implement a ban on Twitter in light of the Cobb flare-up.
"We're going to allow them to tweet; we've just got to be smart about it," Phillips said.