Iowa President on Cy-Hawk: ‘I’m not convinced at all that we should play this game again’
Cy-Hawk may be officially in jeopardy after some comments made this week by University of Iowa President Bruce Harreld, who questioned whether it should be played in the future in an interview with the school newspaper, the Daily Iowan.
This news comes one week after there were issues involving the Iowa band at last week’s Cy-Hawk game that was played in Ames and resulted in an 18-17 win for the Hawkeyes.
In a press release, the programs said, “Both the University of Iowa and Iowa State University are committed to providing a safe environment for everyone attending events on their respective campuses. This includes members of the school’s marching bands. Unfortunately, both the Hawkeye and Cyclone marching bands have been the target of unacceptable behavior at football games in Iowa City and Ames in recent years. Some of the conduct directed at the students in our respective marching bands recently has been rude, vulgar, and in some cases, violent.”
In the recent interview, Harreld said, “I’m not convinced at all that we should play this game again — here or there or anywhere — unless we can protect our fans, our band, and of course our athletes,” adding that he expected to be able “to work through this.”
“If for some reason one party or the other doesn’t come to the table,” he told the paper, “then no, why would we?”
On Tuesday, Iowa State athletic director Jamie Pollard said that “it’s critical that we do everything possible to continue to maintain this series.”
Pollard took part in a news conference on Tuesday with Iowa State Police Chief Michael Newton and ISU president Wendy Wintersteen. As of last week they were investigating five alleged incidents in which Iowa marching band members experienced verbal and physical sexual harassment and assault. But he said that no police reports had been filed by either school.
Pollard said the following: “Have this vision: It was 30 minutes after the game, and the only people remaining in the football stadium were the Iowa marching band and the Iowa State marching band .. Our security personnel advised the Iowa marching band it would be best for them to exit to the east through Gate 1 like our band did and had no issues because the gate was wide open.
However Pollard went on to point out the Iowa marching band did not follow instructions, adding, “For whatever reason the Iowa marching band did not do that. They chose to leave the field through the west side of the Jacobson building where there will thousands of people still shoulder-to-shoulder in a snail’s pace trying to work through that small entry way. The Iowa marching band marched in formation playing their instruments through the back of that crowd and essentially forced their way through a crowd there was no place for anybody to move to.”
Corey Knopp is a third-year band member who told The Gazette, “A fan shoved me out of his way as we were marching in formation back to the buses. He decided to cut through the band and shoved me out of his way. I yelled, ‘Do not put your hands on me, sir,’ and he yelled back, ‘(expletive) you. A girl’s ribs are broken because of fan interaction. A member of the band was cornered by a number of males and was assaulted.”
“We expect to be booed and the usual rivalry game antics,” he added.
Pollard said he believes the Iowa band experienced expletives and things thrown at them, because it’s the same treatment his band has received at Iowa, but added “We all have to do better. That means our fans need to do a better job of policing our fans, but so do the Iowa fans. This has got to be a collective approach to not let that type of behavior happen.”
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