Originally posted on Larry Brown Sports  |  Last updated 10/2/12

Lolo Jones figured she was just responding to another boastful athlete when she challenged Eric LeGrand to a race, but she was left embarrassed after learning the former Rutgers football player is paralyzed.


LeGrand is a former defensive tackle who was paralyzed after suffering a spinal cord injury during a Rutgers-Army game on Oct. 16, 2010. LeGrand has been in a wheelchair since then, but he’s remained in the public eye because of his positive attitude and inspirational response to the injury.


LeGrand happened to tweet at Jones on Tuesday, challenging the Olympic hurdler to a race:


@lolojones want to race me?


— Eric LeGrand (@EricLeGrand52) October 2, 2012



Jones likely saw from LeGrand’s Twitter profile that he bills himself as a defensive tackle for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (his former Rutgers coach Greg Schiano signed him to a one-day contract with the team), and she began taunting him in response.


“Get Checked for a concussion,” she wrote back to LeGrand. “Clearly, u’ve been hit in the head… Cos u arnt beating a track athlete.”


Lolo then raised the stakes.



“I race for money or olympic medals… so how much u wanna wager? 40K? Just go ahead and write the check to Lolo S. Jones.”


Jones deleted both tweets after being informed that LeGrand is paralyzed. She then began her damage control.


No, dnt know. sry dont know every football player. He challenged me 2 a race & I responded RT @finae25: u know he’s a quadrapalegic now?


— Lolo Jones (@lolojones) October 3, 2012



Great I’m gonna get murdered for that tweet. When I had no clue who that dude was.Just responding to any athlete who challenges me to a race


— Lolo Jones (@lolojones) October 3, 2012



LeGrand sympathized with Jones after seeing the backlash she received .


“definitely did not take it personal, I understand exactly where you are coming from. All good over here,” LeGrand wrote to her over Twitter. He even apologized to Jones, saying “did not mean to start anything at all, sorry for all this crazy stuff being said. Much respect for you.”


Thx.Getting trashed by tons of ppl glad ur not one of em RT @ericlegrand52: didnt take it personal,understand where ur coming from.All good


— Lolo Jones (@lolojones) October 3, 2012



This will blow over quickly. We believe Jones when she says she did not know who LeGrand was. She just learned the hard way that you need to be very careful about every response you send on Twitter.


Between this incident and what happened during the Olympics, maybe Jones needs to take a Twitter break (or think three times before she tweets anything).

This article first appeared on Larry Brown Sports and was syndicated with permission.

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