The Student Voice of Coastal Carolina University



Trouble in paradise

“Spontaneous” beach photo goes viral
Photo provided by TMZ.

During Coastal Carolina University’s trip to Hawaii for the bowl game, the Chanticleer Girls dance team was seen posing in a photo on the beach with head football coach Tim Beck.  


The Instagram account for the Coastal football team proceeded to post what looked like a professional photo onto their official social media platforms. The post was ultimately deleted with a statement from the University on Dec. 20. 


“Coach Beck has stated that the photo was taken spontaneously while members of the University’s travel group were on the beach together. There was no intent to generate a particular response,” the statement read.  


Questions surrounding why the post was deleted even more debate among the CCU community, as well as others. The photo had so much media traction that it even gained coverage from platforms as large as TMZ, resulting in more people joining the conversation.  


The Chanticleer Girls’ coach Marla Sage explained how the innocent photo turned into much more. 


“The girls on their own decided they wanted to get matching bathing suits for the trip. They were out there, football was out there doing photos. We asked if he’d take a picture with us, and that’s the whole story,” Sage said. “Every kid wants a picture with their head football coach.” 


Students like Laken Franke, a freshman marine science major, were surprised by the post. 


“There was backlash about this 50-something-year-old man with a bunch of teenage girls in bikinis. It was kind of like an odd thing to see,”  Franke said. 


On the other hand, sophomore English major Kimora White felt it was a fitting photo for Coastal to use in terms of marketing. 


“It’s cute. They’re all smiling. I think it does show unity. It’s all matching,” White said. 


In an online poll posted to Instagram by The Chanticleer, 35% of students felt the post was inappropriate. Among those who felt this way is Thomas Hendrick, a freshman engineering science major, who said he saw a lot of negative comments on social media.  


“If the coach was like ‘hey will you guys do this’ then I feel like maybe that’s a little weird,” Hendrick said. “He’s an older dude with a bunch of young girls.” 


While the intent of the post is still unclear, the dance team emphasizes the spontaneous nature of the event. 


“We were on the beach, he was on the beach. We wear bathing suits on the beach. And we’re Coastal, we’re a beach school,” Sage said. 

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  • T

    TaylorJan 24, 2024 at 8:34 pm

    Best female journalist I know. Amazing article!

  • J

    JanetJan 24, 2024 at 11:49 am

    An explanation is due for this disgusting, appalling, humiliating cartoon sketch of the dance team! It is alarming and has crossed the line into slander, gender bias and defamation of character for these innocent and victimized young women (of your very own school) by the editor, artist, and apparently the entire editorial board for this amateur paper. What a disappointment! Hiding behind the afterthought to add online disclaimers to cover your tracks is simply not enough to fly, as we all have the original copy. It’s mind boggling that several sets of eyes had to approve this sketch depicting this well-respected dance team as men, with their hair cut off, speedos, and obvious penis’s drawn on them is damaging, certainly not funny or understood. What a warped mind to put pencil to paper to sketch this unsightly picture.

    I am the sister of one of these beautiful, smart and very talented young women. What your newspaper has done has become damaging to not only my sister’s mental well-being, but several other team members as well. They are confused and struggling as they are trying to come to terms WHY their own peers (women writing and drawing these articles/images) have publicly taken this turn on them for doing nothing wrong. My sister is humiliated, embarrassed, and struggling with mental anguish as she did not want to go on campus or attend class last week. Yes, YOU did this because of this sick, published picture! The article was one sided and weak, we have all gotten over the original picture because there is nothing wrong with it and it is old news. We are not as concerned with your weak one-sided liberal views in the article, as there are literally THOUSANDS of people through media outlets and social pages that have commented in full support that there is not one thing wrong with this original picture. So your opinion is easily blown off. … But this cartoon sketch is DAMAGING and blatantly meant to tear down, embarrass and humiliate them, so congratulations you did it, are so proud of your actions? Can you imagine how each of these 10 girls feels? Of course you couldn’t because not one of you has reached out to any of them for their opinion or feelings, nope, I don’t think so. Can you imagine how each parent, grandparent, sibling such as myself, feels seeing their family member depicted in this image when it is totally hurtful, harmful, demeaning, and unnecessary? Shame on you!!! Imagine if the table were turned on you or your child, or your sibling or granddaughter!

    I propose a challenge to you to your editorial staff. There is a women’s basketball game on February 7th at 6:00pm where these beautiful and talented ladies will not only be performing, but they will also be recognized as student athletes on Chancey’s Honor Roll. Yes, they are getting rewarded and recognized for their hard work in academics! Next issue should have a spotlight on them for their hard work, year round dedication, and excellence in academics as school athletes. They not only perform and work at football, basketball, and baseball games full time, they also make MANY appearances throughout the year for store openings, downtown Conway and Myrtle Beach events, elementary school events, and my favorite, The Grand Strand Miracle League where they volunteer their time with special needs youth on the baseball field. It is amazing, but obviously you wouldn’t know!

  • K

    Karen JonesJan 18, 2024 at 11:21 am

    Shame on you as a female “journalist “ to attempt to shame these ladies and slam your football coach. Nothing wrong with this picture. The real story is how a FEW negative comments got the school to remove the picture. 90% of the comments i saw of the thousands that were left saw nothing wrong with the picture. The school should not have caved to the few. It’s a beach picture. No inappropriate behavior. Way to support a female team from your school who did nothing wrong. They are smart talented women who support the school and many sports. Be careful – your jealousy is showing

    • M

      Madelyn KillionJan 22, 2024 at 3:25 pm

      No, Karen, shame on you for attacking the journalist. Lest you have forgotten, free speech is an actual thing in this country. And you should also take into consideration that Lehman didn’t postulate anything-simply delivered the facts as they were presented to her. But all this will be lost on you, as you have made up your mind to blame her for doing her job. No, Karen, the shame is fully on you. Be careful-your stupidity is showing.

    • R

      Richard LehmanJan 22, 2024 at 4:41 pm

      @karen jones The jealous journalist is my daughter who is simply writing an article for her university. You’re an adult and trying to hurt her….shame on you.

      • E

        EmilyJan 23, 2024 at 9:07 pm

        It’s definitely a horrible feeling when your child is attacked for doing absolutely nothing wrong. Imagine how the parents of dance team feel. They’ve been dealing with this nonsense for over a month and in the national spotlight the entire time.

      • E

        EmilyJan 23, 2024 at 9:57 pm

        As the parent of this journalist, how would feel if your daughter was in a photo that thousands of people saw and then that exact same photo was altered and she was turned into a man for the entire school to see? An immature and humiliating biased act taken against your child. Imagine being that parent.

    • B

      BethJan 22, 2024 at 4:45 pm

      Shame on you for trashing a female “journalist”, who is most likely a student for addressing something that gained national attention. Nowhere in the article did I recognize the journalists’ opinion or any type of shaming. For you to accuse her of being jealous is really your way of slamming a fellow female that is just doing her job. Way to go, Karen.

    • J

      Julie DavidsonJan 22, 2024 at 7:02 pm

      I see no attempt made to shame the young ladies or to slam the coach. I did not see anywhere that the journalist offered an opinion of the picture or referred to it negatively.

    • B

      Bob RossJan 22, 2024 at 8:38 pm

      You’re really living up to your name right now…Karen

    • K

      karen h8erJan 23, 2024 at 9:50 pm

      hey karen, your acting as if the journalist was the reason their picture got taken down. she is only reporting, i read nothing opinion based in this article. maybe you should go back to third grade so you can learn how to read (if you even made it past elementary school) hope you have a great day!

    • L

      LukeJan 29, 2024 at 10:55 am

      It seems like you are a very delusional woman who has no ability to differentiate between facts and opinions. You could’ve simply advocated for the women in the picture but you decided to attack the journalist who simply stated what happened. Your lack of understanding on this simple topic really shows your lack of intelligence and you should think before you say stupid things.