This past weekend, several players and teams in the NFL took a knee during the national anthem as a form of political protest. The action has been met with its fair share of criticism recently.

During Monday’s press conference, Illinois head coach Lovie Smith was asked for his opinion about the anthem protests this past weekend. Smith, who was a longtime coach in the NFL, provided his thoughts.

Here’s what Smith had to say about the political issue according to Jeremy Werner of Illini Inquirer:

Smith has spoken on the issue a few times this year and has held a pretty consistent opinion. He continues to say that he wants his players to be educated and to stand behind the decision they make, whatever that might be.