The University of Alabama's Student Government Association (SGA) said Wednesday that a warning about disruptive behavior during Saturday's football game against LSU was not intended to suppress students' free speech rights.
“Some have misinterpreted my comment regarding 'disruptive behavior,'" SGA Vice President for Student Affairs Jason Rothfarb said in a statement. "As with other games this season, Organization’s Block Seating locations will be clearly marked, but at certain times, other students can and should have access to open seats. By disruptive behavior, we are asking students to be respectful to all students and staff and avoid altercations.
"My email had nothing to do with anyone’s First Amendment rights and I am sorry for any confusion. Please express yourself and especially your pride for the Tide!”
An earlier email from Rothfarb, which was reported on by AL.com, warned student organizations who have reserved blocks of seats at Bryant-Denny Stadium to enter the stadium at least two hours before kickoff due to heightened security. President Trump is scheduled to attend the game between the Tigers and the Crimson Tide, who are both undefeated and ranked No. 2 and No. 3 respectively in the College Football Playoff Rankings
"Any organizations that engage in disruptive behavior during the game will be removed from block seating instantly for the remainder of the season," Rothfarb's initial message read.
Saturday's game will be the third major sporting event attended by the president in 13 days. On Oct. 27, Trump was booed by the crowd at Nationals Park in Washington while attending Game 5 of the World Series between the Washington Nationals and the Houston Astros. Some fans mockingly yelled “lock him up,” a chant Trump supporters began in 2016 against his opponent, Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.
Last week, Trump attended a UFC welterweight championship fight between Jorge Masvidal and Nate Diaz at Madison Square Garden in New York. The president was greeted with a mix of cheers and boos as he took his seat near the octagon.
Fox News' Jack Durschlag contributed to this report.