Wisconsin to revise stadium policy after offensive costume
MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Wisconsin will revise home football game policies after a fan at a game against Nebraska was asked to remove offensive parts of a costume that appeared to be a President Barack Obama mask and a noose around his neck.
Athletic director Barry Alvarez said in a statement Wednesday that he was “deeply troubled by the incident ... and sorry for the harm it caused.”
Alvarez says he is determined that “nothing like it would happen again.”
The school plans to have a revised policy in place in time for Wisconsin’s next game at Camp Randall Stadium on Nov. 12 against Illinois.
Alvarez met with community leaders and students on Wednesday to discuss the stadium policies.
“Our department is committed to working collaboratively to make our stadium a great and safe place for fans to watch a football game,” Alvarez said.
The picture of the costumed fan from the eighth-ranked Badgers’ overtime win Saturday night over Nebraska circulated on social media. The fan wore a black-and-white jumpsuit, along with the mask, the noose and a sign on his chest. Another person appeared to be holding up the rope of the noose.
The fan complied when guest services staff asked to remove the offensive parts of the costume, the school said.
Current university policy does not allow fans to wear masks while entering the stadium, but they are allowed to wear them once inside.
On Saturday , the school said the costume was “repugnant” and ran counter to the university’s values, but was an exercise in free speech.
Wisconsin said it also exercised its right to ask the fan to remove the offensive parts of the costume.
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