The University of Utah has cut ties with Papa John’s Pizza after the company’s founder came under fire last month for using the n-word in a conference call.
“The actions of this individual, from the top ranks of the company, clearly do not align with our beliefs, and we hope to find an alternative that is a better fit with us,” said Jerry Basford, the school’s associate vice president for student affairs, in a statement.
The university closed the Papa John’s location in its food court on July 20 — one week after John Schnatter’s racial slur was reported and one day after telling The Salt Lake Tribune that it was still considering whether to completely sever the relationship. Already, the school had removed all images of Schnatter from the eatery and from its pizza boxes.
Schnatter, too, has previously criticized the NFL for not cracking down on players who kneeled during the national anthem, claiming the protests hurt Papa John’s bottom line.
The founder later apologized for saying the n-word, though the company has still removed him from its board and professional sports teams — including the Utah Jazz — have dropped their business ties.
The U. took more time than most to make its decision. But it tweeted Thursday that no employees at the school’s food court lost their job with the closing. Instead, the university will replace the eatery with the Hive Express, which will serve pizza and pasta, too.