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Player's tweet uses racial epithet

A message sent from Bruins receiver Carroll is critical of Chow.

October 25, 2009|Chris Foster

A Twitter message sent by UCLA freshman Randall Carroll to a top high school recruit complained about Bruins offensive coordinator Norm Chow and referred to him with a racial epithet.

The post, from the account of OCiAM, dated Oct. 22, referred to the Bruins' last three games before Saturday and read, "man oregon, stanford and cal should have been easy wins ,, but [expletive] thys [racial slur] norm chow dnt be trustin us ,, so it is what it is."

Carroll directed the tweet to the attention of La Canada St. Francis High running back Dietrich Riley. It also could be seen by the public.

"I was frustrated, tired of losing," Carroll said Saturday after UCLA's 27-13 loss to Arizona. "I wasn't trying disrespect Norm Chow in any way. . . . He was one of the reasons I came here. I was just saying I didn't feel like he trusted us, because we are such a young bunch. I wasn't downgrading his coaching."

As a senior at Los Angeles Cathedral High, Carroll was the focus of an intense recruiting battle between UCLA and USC.

The former state sprint champion, who originally committed to USC before signing with UCLA, has been tweeting Riley, who is being courted by both schools.

Carroll talked with Coach Rick Neuheisel and will meet Chow at some point.

"Coach Neuheisel said we need to watch what we say in twitters," Carroll said.

"I was just talking to my friend and I put it in words I shouldn't say."

Neuheisel said after the game, "Randall has already said to me that he didn't mean it. We have to educate our guys how to use the technology."

However, the coach at that point did not know about the racial remark.

Later, he called reporters back to say, "It has come to my attention that there was a derogatory word used that, unfortunately, is used too often in today's culture. It is absolutely unacceptable and I will speak to Randall on the flight home."

Riley said he didn't see Carroll's message, but he confirmed that he and Carroll communicate using Twitter.

The message about Chow was sent to Riley's site at 8:39 p.m. Riley sent three tweets to "OCiAM" on Oct. 22, at 8:03, 8:13 and 8:53. The last read, "yall need to start throwing the damn ball!!!"

The "OC" in the Twitter address is believed to stand for "Olympic Champion," dating to when Carroll won a track and field championship at the Junior Olympics. The account was deactivated Saturday.

Carroll also was among four UCLA players suspended for the Kansas State game for violating unspecified team rules.

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chris.foster@latimes.com

twitter.com/cfosterlatimes

Times staff writer Eric Sondheimer contributed to this report.

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