The flag with the blue stripe signals support for the police, often expressed with the slogan, “Back the blue,” while the flag with the thin red line is connected to support for firefighters. The two players carried the flags despite being denied permission to do so when they asked in advance.
"While we understand these students' desire to (sic) show their support of our first responders, they did not obtain permission from district officials," Little Miami Local Schools said in a statement to Fox19 on Monday. "Administrators must act when students break the rules."
The school said a ceremony held before the game honored the people killed in the 9/11 attacks.
The superintendent, Gregory Power, told WKRC-TV he has received hate messages by email and voicemail since announcing the suspension of the two players.
“The only two flags that will come through the Little Miami football tunnel are the flag of the United States of America and the Little Miami spirit flag,” said Bobbie Grice, president of the Little Miami Local Schools board in a statement Tuesday.