O.J. Simpson ‘In Memoriam’ at BET Awards’ gets awkward audience reaction

O.J. Simpson was included in the BET Awards’ In Memoriam section at the Sunday night show, apparently shocking many in attendance.

Others included in the segment, such as Clarence Avant, Willie Mays and Carl Weathers, received widespread applause. But when Simpson popped up, there was a notable silence followed by smattered cheers.

“lol OJ Simpson in memoriam for anything is WILD no matter how you slice it,” one viewer wrote on Twitter.

The BET Awards were also criticized for muting a significant portion of Usher’s speech after he was honored with a lifetime achievement award.

Tia Mowry introduced the In Memoriam portion as a tribute to “the Black excellence that we unfortunately lost this year.”

“It’s never easy to say goodbye to those who influence us, but we can take a moment to celebrate and acknowledge their contributions to the culture,” she said.

The In Memoriam segment also included Bill Cobbs, Maurice Hines, Richard Roundtree, Ron Cephas Jones, Rudolph Isley, Irish Grinstead, Louis Gossett Jr. and Dexter Scott King. It notably did not include actor Andre Braugher.

Simpson died from prostate cancer in April at age 76. In the BET Awards slideshow, he was listed as “former NFL player,” but he was also an actor who appeared in “The Naked Gun” trilogy. Of course, Simpson was also known as the prime suspect in the murder of his ex-wife Nicole Brown and her friend Ron Goldman in 1994, though he was acquitted on all charges.