Thursday, March 13, 2008

CC AD Responds To Obscene Students & Racial Slurs

(left) Some shocking allegations have been made by several fans & CC's AD Ken Ralph addressed some of the issues

It seems that quite a few fans had rough experiences at Colorado College's World Arena last Saturday night, but one DU parent/Colorado College alumnus claims that racial slurs were directed at his wife & him. These stories only came to light after Mike Chamber's Blog article this week.

Needless to say Colorado College needs to investigate this matter immediately.
"I’d like to start off by saying that I have been a CC fan all my life. I graduated from CC in 1974 and I absolutely love, scratch that, loved going to CC hockey games.

I am a black male and I have a son who started at DU this past fall. I am more a fan of my son than I am of any hockey team, so I fully supported him in his decision to go to DU. At the CC game [Fri. @ DU, Sat. @ CC], I was wearing a CC sweatshirt to represent my alma mater, and a DU hat that my son had given me. I didn’t think this was going to be too much of a problem, but I was gravely mistaken. I went to [DU's] Magness Arena (Wearing a CC sweatshirt and DU hat) on Friday night and noticed the occasional R-rated chant, but nothing too inappropriate in unison, and nothing that I felt was something you wouldn’t hear on the television these days. I enjoyed watching CC win, and on the way out, two students walked passed me and told me “Congrats on the win, but get ready for tomorrow!” Nothing better than a little friendly competition. I had a great time at Magness on Friday night and looked forward to watching the game in the WA [CC's World Arena] on Saturday.

I live in C Springs, so I try to go to a couple games every season. I have always noticed that the student section was out of line, but I never really thought much of it. They’re rowdy college kids, so what are you going to do. Saturday night was especially bad this year. I grew up in Washington DC during the 50s and 60s and so I have experienced my share of racism, being that I was black in a mostly white school. I have never felt as threatened as I did on Saturday night. Because I was wearing both DU and CC colors, someone (most likely a student) yelled at me, “MAKE UP YOUR MIND YOU F*****G N****R!” when I was walking into the WA. My wife and I were shocked, but we did not want to get involved because we knew this would further escalate the situation. My wife is white, and I was holding her hand as we were walking to the concessions both during one of the period breaks. Another person (college student again probably) yelled “RAPE, HE’S GOING TO RAPE HER!!” At this point I was absolutely furious and my wife and I decided we were going to leave because neither of us wanted to be subjected to that anymore. I was seriously considering filing a police report, but instead I’ve decided to never go to a CC game ever again. It doesn’t matter if these were isolated incidents or not. I was offended by what I heard from the CC student section, and I have to say that today I am ASHAMED to be a CC alum. I have written a letter to the AD, and I look forward to what his response seems to be.

CC Fans should be ashamed of themselves. I never thought I’d say this, but I hope CC loses in the playoffs. I also remember reading about the CC black face incident where CC hockey players painted their faces black at some fund raiser golf tournament. I know the CC players have worked hard this year, but from all of the disciplinary suspensions they’ve had this year, I refuse to believe they’re a great group of guys. I hope CC loses in the playoffs, because nothing would make me angrier than to see those CC fans who insulted me at the game happy.

http://www.collegehockeynews.com/news/2007/10/17_ccsuspensions.php"

Comment by Upset CC Fan — March 11, 2008 @ 2:37 pm

Colorado College's Athletic Director Ken Ralph responded to some of the complaints leveled by fans in Chamber's Blog.

Mike [Chambers],

I was directed to your blog by one of our fans. We have not met but I am the new Director of Athletics at Colorado College. I wish you had contacted me or someone in our department for comment before posting what seems to be a very one sided piece.

For the past four months we have been working hard to clean up our act in the student section. This has been a concerted effort on behalf of our President, administration, faculty, staff, and students. It started as a mission to banish one chant in particular (goalie…goalie…you suck d***!). I am happy to say that we have made some headway on eliminating that cheer from our arena. It now dies out quickly due to the intervention of several students. It proves that when we put our collecive efforts into change, it can happen.

I am not at all pleased with the conduct of our student section this past Saturday. While I want a boisterous student section I do not want anything said or done that would drive off fans. Use of profanity is not acceptable and we have started to move toward evicting patrons from the facility that cross that line. We have actually reviewed the CET broadcast of the tape to identify students who were misbehaving and will address that with them once they are identified. The student in the Tiger suit comes immediately to mind. Many of the students in the building that evening only go to the game when DU is in town and they are not yet up to speed with the changes we are making in that section. As this is my first year here it is obvious that the CC/DU series brings out the best in players and the worst in fans. It is clear we have some special issues that will need to be addressed for this game in the future.

Please know that we will continue to address this issue. I wanted a spirited but respectful crowd at all CC athletic events.

In the future please feel free to contact me directly about these issues. As a journalist I am sure you are interested in both sides of the story and I am readily accessible if needed. Thank you for your coverage of college hockey..

Ken Ralph, Director of Athletics - Colorado College

Comment by Ken Ralph — March 12, 2008 @ 9:51 am

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

It appears that Mr. Ralph has his hands full. Shouting obscenities is one thing. Racist taunting is a whole different ballgame. That carries some serious implications.

dggoddard said...

You got that right.

I would add that by not cracking down on the thugs down there, they've created an atmosphere that breeds incidents like this.

Anonymous said...

Some poor behavior can be expected in the student section.
We were in the DU section with many CC adult fans. These "adult" CC fans behavior was shockingly immature. Making statements to adult DU fans turning around after CC scores and edging on the DU fans motioning for them to stand up now, cheer now. why can they not just be happy that they scored. To insight conflict is beyond my comprehension.
Rather than get into an altercation, we moved to empty seats in another section of the arena and kept our rooting preference anonymous. We still observed CC adult fans chanting F%$## You DU. Very disappointing and a show of NO CLASS.

Anonymous said...

I am not exactly certain what the "other" side of this "one-sided" post can possibly be. While I am as WASPY as it gets, it absolutely baffles me that an AD -- especially one overseeing the types of activities occurring at CC this past year -- can call for a "balanced" protrayal here. This is black and white -- and attention should have been called to neither. Try joining us in the new millenium, CC!

Anonymous said...

I believe the allusion made by Ralph regarding "the other side and one-sided posting" is his feeble attempt to cover his own ass. Mike Chambers shed light on a problem that been festering for years. The truth hurts.

World Arena has been a cesspool for bad fan behavior for years. If the administration at CC is worth a crap they will do something about it.

fantomas said...

Completely off the subject... Woo hoo, my Frozen Four tickets have arrived. GO DU

Anonymous said...

gee, maybe the so-called DU "whiners" and other fans who complained after the game last week weren't so off base after all!

Adam said...

I definitely applaud anyone bringing this nonsense to light, and support Mike Chambers. And I've also written stuff about CC that has drawn a phone call from Mr. Ralph and his staff. However, having known Ken Ralph for years, from his time as AD at RPI, I can say unequivocally that he is a solid, stand-up guy - and a nice guy - and if he says something, he means it. At least he's going to try. (Adam W. - CHN)

TigerPride said...

at the rate people get offended these days, we should just hand out pink pom-poms to fans as they come in the gates to bang together. Ya know, just in case clapping for your team is offensive to someone ;)

I only heard these chants for about 1 minute before the game started and we were right above them so it sounds like it was just a small cluster

Kevin said...

Was walking out of the restroom at WA last week and a student out of the blue says FU. My brother turns to me and says what did you say to get that? I pointed at my DU jersey and said, this is all it takes.

On the other hand, my family and I were at the stadium early, while the CC student section was waiting outside to get in for their general admission. A loud mouth student noticed my jersey and booed. Called me a Republican, pro-lifer, pro-war and other such "put downs".

Laughed it off and said be careful or I won't give you a job when you get out.

Some of this banter is to be expected in "enemy" territory, but the FU stuff is classless.

Counter to what Ralph says about sucking... We heard that all night. If that was progress being made, I can't imagine where they started from...

Anonymous said...

Harrassment at any arena is offensive. Seems to me that DU needs to clean up it's doorstep before tossing many stones!

As a CC fan, my daughter, son-in-law, grandson and myself have gone to DU's arena for many of the rival games. EACH time, we have been harrassed by DU fans (both youth and ADULTS). My son-in-law has been accosted in the restroom, my grandson (stopped and pushed around) as he was going to get a soda, and a man (in a suit) sitting behind me continously tried to pick a fight with me (a woman in my 60's).

So contrary to what you all might think, your Magness Arena is NOT squeeky clean either!

Anonymous said...

Coming into this blog a bit late, but still feel the need.

As a coach of a youth hockey team in Colorado, we play teams from all over the state in league games and tournaments. Without fail, the worst behaved fans, mostly parents and siblings of those kids on the ice, are the ones who cheer for the Jr. Tigers in Colorado Springs. World arena is the only facility where I have personally witnessed fights, in the stands.

It is the only place where parents will yell at opposing teams kids, calling them out. These are kids aged from 9-16. I must say that in the Springs, fans with out class or respect don't just attend the varsity college games.

It is unfortunate that a city that is the home to USA Hockey, the Olympic training center and should be the hub of all that is great about the sport, is spoiled by fans who seem to think the game played by Paul Newman in the movie "Slap Shot" is the better way.