GOLF NEWS - Cameron Champ considered not playing in Thursday's opening round of the US PGA's BMW Championship over the police shooting of Jacob Blake, but made his own statement with his shoes.
The 25-year-old biracial American wore one white shoe and one black shoe with messages of support during his seven-over 77 at Olympia Fields, where Tiger Woods and Tony Finau also backed the growing sport boycott movement.
"I definitely thought about it for sure," Champ said of sitting out. "But obviously I feel like I can do a lot more playing, and again, showing my support and expressing myself."
The PGA on Thursday backed the game boycotts and sport shutdowns by the NBA, NHL, Major League Baseball, Major League Soccer and Women's NBA clubs over shooting of Blake in Kenosha, Wisconsin.
"The PGA Tour supports them and any of our own members standing up for issues they believe in," the tour said in a statement.
Woods, a 15-time major winner and reigning Masters champion, said he did not consider sitting out the round, which would have ended his bid to qualify for next week's Tour Championship.
"No, I talked to the commissioner and they were on board. Obviously he released his statement, and all the guys were on board," Woods said.
"There was talk about it because of obviously what happened, but we're all on board, on the same page."
Champ had Blake's name and "Black Lives Matter" among the messages on his shoes, objecting to police brutality and racial injustice.
"I want to show my love and support," Champ said.
"Black Lives Matter means all lives matter. Yes, all lives matter, but so do black lives. It's a situation where, again, as a country, as a whole we've kind of dug ourselves a hole. Now with media and people videotaping and seeing things, it's starting to come alive.
"People are starting to talk about it, which is the good thing. Without dialogue, without talking about it, nothing is going to happen. It's a decent start, but obviously there's still a lot of stuff going on that quite frankly should not be happening at all."
Among those, to Champ, is Blake being shot from behind as he tried to enter a car with his three children inside, a video seen around the world.
"For me just to watch that video... he's a human being," Champ said. "It just has to end.
"It's a good thing we're all talking about it. it's what needs to happen for change to happen."
'full support' of NBA
Tony Finau, the PGA's first player of Tongan and Samoan descent, cited the charity benefits tour events give to host areas as part of the reasons why he played.
"I don't think I would have been surprised if somebody had boycotted the BMW Championship," Finau said. "Our tour has taken the position that we're going to continue to play.
"We're in full support of what the NBA is doing."
Finau called for conversations to help solve the tense racial issues that remain unresolved.
"If we can learn from each other, listen to each other, I think it's a big deal," Finau said. "If we can continue to have those uncomfortable conversations, we can move forward."