INDIANAPOLIS (AP) -- Fed up with what it considers ''hostile'' and ''abusive'' American Indian nicknames, the NCAA announced Friday it would shut those words and images out of postseason tournaments, a move that left some school officials angry and threatening legal action.
Starting in February, any school with a nickname or logo considered racially or ethnically ''hostile'' or ''abusive'' by the NCAA would be prohibited from using them in postseason events. Mascots will not be allowed to perform at tournament games, and band members and cheerleaders will also be barred from using American Indians on their uniforms beginning in 2008.
Major college football teams are not subject to the ban because there is no official NCAA tournament.
How is "Seminoles" or "Illini" hostile or abusive?
''That the NCAA would now label our close bond with the Seminole people as culturally 'hostile and abusive' is both outrageous and insulting,'' Florida State president T.K. Wetherell said in a statement.
''I intend to pursue all legal avenues to ensure that this unacceptable decision is overturned, and that this university will forever be associated with the 'unconquered' spirit of the Seminole Tribe of Florida,'' he added.
''Certainly some things remain to be answered from today, and one of those things is the definition of what is 'hostile or abusive,''' said Tom Hardy, a spokesman at Illinois.
The NCAA did not give a clear answer on that.
Ah ha. FSU President T.K. Wetherell's response is here. Excerpt:
On June 17, the Tribal Council of the Seminole Tribe of Florida spoke unequivocally of its support for Florida State University in its use of the Seminole name and related symbols. Accordingly, I intend to pursue all legal avenues to ensure that this unacceptable decision is overturned, and that this university will forever be associated with the "unconquered" spirit of the Seminole Tribe of Florida.
National surveys have shown in recent years that an overwhelming majority of Native Americans are not offended by the use of Native American names and symbols. In making its decision, the executive committee has been swayed by a strident minority of activists who claim to speak for all Native Americans. It is unconscionable that the Seminole Tribe of Florida has been ignored.
But Wisco and Iowa are the good guys.
The committee also recommended that schools follow the examples of Wisconsin and Iowa by refusing to schedule contests against schools that use American Indian nicknames.
I think they are just chicken to go down to Tallahassee.
President Myles Brand noted that some schools using the Warrior nickname will not face sanctions because they do not use Indian symbols. One school, North Carolina-Pembroke -- which uses the nickname Braves -- will also be exempted because Brand said the school has historically had a high percentage of students, more than 20 percent, who are American Indians.
So it's not the name then? It's ok if the school has a lot of Native Americans? What kind of rubbish is this. I'll let The Monk have at this but I have all these bad vibes about Myles Brand -- seems to have a pattern of acting in a high-handed manner.
A two-year contract extension for Brand. His deal was to run through Dec. 31, 2007 and now includes an indefinite two-year rollover.