Louisiana State College (LSU) has been compelled to rent a bodyguard for star gymnast and TikTok sensation Olivia Dunne after the staff’s season opener in Utah final week was swarmed by rowdy followers.
The NY Submit stories Dunne’s coach, Jay Clark, mentioned a safety officer might be posted exterior the staff locker room and at their accommodations when the staff travels.
“That (bodyguard) might be in our lodge and out of doors our locker room and getting us to and from the bus on the venue,” Clark informed the Advocate/Occasions-Picayune.
“(The officer) might be there to create a fringe that retains all people secure.
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“We wish to be accessible to our followers with autographs and youngsters, however we additionally don’t wish to bury our heads within the sand. We wish to make certain all people is secure always.”
LSU is contemplating altering its coverage on how accessible the athletes are to followers, the paper reported.
“We’re going to change a few of the insurance policies of permitting the ladies to enter the stands instantly following a meet,” Clark mentioned.
“We’ve all the time allowed them to go up there post-meet with their households and work together with them.
“We wish to make certain we nonetheless present them with that point with their households, however there gained’t be any extra going into the stands and there might be a restricted period of time that they will work together with the followers within the stands over the rail and that might be monitored carefully.”
“I may see issues starting to get greater.
“We needed to get forward of it, however we didn’t see what occurred final week coming as large because it’s been. It’s been effervescent below the floor for a 12 months now.”
Through the staff’s season opener final Friday on the College of Utah, unruly followers carrying indicators and cutouts of Dunne chanted for her all through the meet, regardless of her being out with an damage. The antics disrupted different athletes’ routines.
Afterwards, a video circulated of a giant group of males lined up exterior the sector chanting “We wish her” and Dunne’s title repeatedly whereas ready to see her exit the sector.
Former Olympic gymnast and present TV analyst Samantha Peszek recorded the video, and known as the group “really so scary and disturbing and cringey” in her caption.
In keeping with KSL.com Sports, LSU needed to transfer its staff bus to keep away from the group of boys.
The mom of Jillian Hoffman, a gymnast on Utah’s staff, posted on social media that she noticed followers performing in a disrespectful method within the stands.
She additionally claimed followers made derogatory feedback towards her daughter, calling her “Livvy 2.0.”
With 6.7 million followers on TikTok and a pair of.8 million followers on Instagram, Dunne, the 20-year-old Hillsdale, NJ, native, is without doubt one of the most distinguished athletes in faculty sports activities.
In keeping with On3, Dunne, a junior, is the highest-paid feminine athlete in faculty sports activities, raking in A$3.2 million.
After the meet in Utah, Dunne spoke out in regards to the incident.
“I’ll all the time recognize and love the assist from you guys, however in case you come to a meet, I wish to ask you to please be respectful of the opposite gymnasts and the gymnastics neighborhood as we’re simply doing our job,” Dunne tweeted. LSU subsequent performs on the College of Kentucky earlier than returning for its house opener on Monday in opposition to Oklahoma.
This text initially appeared within the NY Submit and was reproduced with permission.