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Papa John’s: Oregon State most recent to cut ties after John Schnatter’s racial slur

After an incident last week in which Papa John’s founder John Schnatter admitted to using an offensive racial slur during a conference call in May, multiple professional franchises and collegiate athletic programs have suspended or ended their sponsorship contracts with Papa John’s.

Oregonian columnist John Canzano tweeted a statement Monday afternoon detailing Oregon State’s suspension of their Papa John’s sponsor relationship.

In the statement, Beavers vice president and director of athletics Scott Barnes said, “The derogatory and insensitive comments made by Papa John’s founder John Schnatter are not reflective of Oregon State University’s values and the inclusive environment we strive to foster throughout the university community and within OSU Athletics for all student-athletes and fans.”

Since the controversy blew up on social media, Schnatter has stepped down as chairman of the pizza franchise. In addition to using the racial slur, Schnatter was also criticized for using graphic imagery to describe the lynchings of African Americans in his hometown in Indiana.

One of the first athletic programs to rid itself of the company’s name was the University of Louisville, which announced on Friday that it would remove Papa John’s from the name of the school’s football stadium and call it “Cardinal Stadium.”

As of Monday evening, 20 athletic organizations have cut ties with Papa John’s.


MLB suspended its “Papa Slam” promotion. The New York Yankees, Baltimore Orioles, Miami Marlins, Washington Nationals, Minnesota Twins, Seattle Mariners, Atlanta Braves and Tampa Bay Rays all suspended their relationship with the company. The Kansas City Royals suspended their promotions. The Texas Rangers canceled their promotions indefinitely.


The Seattle Seahawks ended their partnership with the company. AMB Sports and Entertainment (Atlanta Falcons, Atlanta United, Mercedes-Benz Stadium) suspended its relationship.


The Orlando Magic suspended their partnership.


In addition to Atlanta United, FC Dallas suspended its promotion.

College athletics

In addition to Oregon State and Louisville, the University of Kentucky discontinued its financial relationship with Schnatter.

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