Friday, February 16, 2007

How about a chicken?

It's official, the University of Illinois has caved into pressure from the NCAA and will stop using its 80 year old mascot, Chief Illiniwek. The NCAA will then allow Illinois to host post-season events.

Apparently, the NCAA rule change a few years ago, which has been defeated by Florida State, is still packing a punch somewhere. I'm curious to whether any native Americans connected to the university had any opinions on the issue.

The problem with the NCAA's rule is clear - it doesn't take into account various situations. At Florida State, the Seminole tribe has given permission for their image to be used, so the NCAA has just allowed FSU to ignore their own rule. Next, at Universities like Miami, the Indian mascot and logo were used for years with the Miami tribe's approval. When the tribe changed its mind, the university got a new logo. However, the Miami tribe wished the old logo to be associated still with Miami sports, and the university has done so with the indian logo hanging from the side of the football stadium.

However, in Illinois' case, all native American imagery had to be removed. Does that not apply to Miami as well?

Not only is the NCAA's rule arbitrary and irregularly enforced, it ignores the desires of those indian tribes so honored with athletic mascots and determines for all of us what is and isn't "offensive." Ridiculous.

3 comments:

Pookie said...

It still beats having a mascot that is neither a bird nor a tornado!

And yes, the NCAA is one of the most inept organizations around.

radar said...

pookie,

aren't you a bit young to be posting on blogs? did someone put you up to this?

The Big Ticket said...

You are absolutely right in that the NCAA is attempting to be overly politically correct, an organization that has no jurisdiction over what is and isn't "offensive." Actually, they did try to make Florida State change and it wasn't until the Seminole tribe lobbied TO HAVE IT REMAIN on grounds they were honored to be the team mascot. Not to mention the NCAA claimed the signature student-section "Seminole Chop" was inappropriate only to be made a fool when the tribe expressed no problem with it whatsoever. When the policy was developed they created a list of questionably offensive school mascots to target (and when shortly after Katrina happened and many people's lives were negatively altered, of course the Miami Hurricanes weren't added). This is just one example of how particular we could get. Shit, those that have lost homes and loved ones in tornados could be offended by the Cyclones. Let the masses come to the NCAA in protect, not the other way around. Or maybe they should just focus on something important to collegiate sports that all of America complains about (the BCS perhaps) and drop the PC bullshit altogether. One truth rings clear: you don't have the right to not be offended.