Thursday, September 29, 2005

On A Related Note

Speaking of sticking your nose in where it doesn't belong...

The NCAA today denied the University of North Dakota's request to keep the 'Fighting Sioux' mascot/logo for it's university.

This is one of the stupidest things the NCAA has done in a while. And the NCAA has done some pretty stupid things in its day. The 'regulation' as put forth by the NCAA, says that the "abusive and hostile" use of American Indian nicknames will be banned from postseason use. This means that schools with those mascots and logos, will not be allowed to use any imagery of the logo, or use of mascots in postseason games. This goes into effect in full in 2008. The first step of this 'regulation', is that school with such mascots/logos, will not be allowed to host a postseason event, starting in 2006.

Well, 2006 is almost here, and the University of North Dakota has been scheduled to host some post season hockey events in ND after the deadline. This was scheduled well before the regulation came about. The NCAA has said that all references to the logo need to be covered up by the time the tourney comes to UND. The University is saying that it would be too cost prohibitive to cover the 3,000+ logos in the facility.

But here's where the absolute stupid part comes in. At first, there were several schools at the Division One level that were affected by this 'regulation'. The Florida State Seminoles appealed the decision, and were granted an 'exemption' by the NCAA to keep the mascot, and FSU will not be forced to hide/change/give up their mascot. The Central Michigan Chippeawas and the Utah Utes ( with a U and a large feather and Indian bead symbol as a mascot ) were also granted exemptions by the NCAA.

So how can you have a regulation banning Indian mascots, calling them "abusive and hostile", but then allow three schools to keep them? Did I miss something? What kind of logic is that? Any why just limit it to the postseason you ask? Well, the NCAA had an answer for that. They said that they did not posses the authority to do anything about schools using mascots during the regular season, because, well, 'what they do when competing against each other is their own business.'. Say WHAT?

The NCAA is saying that they can put the regulation in effect in the postseason, because they run the post season tournaments. But in effect, by saying the matter is between the schools during the season is a bunch of bull. There are literally, over 400 pages of regulations that pertain to athlete eligibility as defined by the NCAA. Those rules apply to all collegiate contests, post season or not. So how can you say that you can't regulate mascot usage during the regular season, but not allow someone to play based off the eligibility requirements during the regular season???

And to pick and choose which mascots are "hostile and abusive" is absurd as well. My high school had a caricature of an Indian for a mascot. This mascot stood for a VERY long time, before a new principal came in to office, and decided for himself that the mascot was derogatory to Indians. A debate ensued, and eventually, it was put to a vote of the students to keep the mascot, or get rid of it. 95% of the students voted to keep the mascot. So what did they do? They got rid of the mascot of course.

Sometimes when I start writing about something in the blog here, my blood pressure begins to skyrocket. These things are about people sticking their nose in where it doesn't belong, and being power hungry to do something about it. There are much larger issues that need to be dealt with, and to feel that you have the authority to tell other people what their mascot should/shouldn't be is just plain arrogant. Someone needs to give Miles Brand ( the president of the NCAA ) a swift kick in the ass, and bring his enormous ego back down to earth.


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