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Mascot Review Committee to convene
to study mascot and nickname issue

May 11, 2007 --
During the March 9 meeting of the Board of Trustees of Arkansas State University, ASU-Jonesboro chancellor Dr. Robert L. Potts announced that he planned to appoint a broadly based committee of constituent representatives to study the Indian mascot issue. The newly formed Mascot Review Committee will hold its first meeting Monday, May 14, at 10 a.m. in the Mockingbird Room of the ASU Student Union.

Mr. Jim Pickens, immediate past chair of the ASU Board of Trustees, has agreed to chair the committee.

The Mascot Review Committee will consider the university’s continued use of the Indian nickname and mascot to represent ASU’s athletic teams. Since the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) ban on the use of Native American nicknames and mascots in post-season tournaments as of August 2005, and the developments surrounding that ban, an in-depth review of the mascot issue was deemed necessary by Dr. Potts.

Cross-sections of campus and community leaders have been invited to participate, and there will be multiple opportunities for input from the general public, as well.

According to Dr. Potts, committee members will be charged with reviewing and studying information provided by the NCAA. Information will also be evaluated from schools which are keeping their Native American mascot imagery and those schools which have chosen to adopt new imagery. The committee will objectively evaluate all arguments on this issue, both pros and cons, and make a recommendation to Potts based on that evaluation. The committee will meet throughout the summer and into the fall.

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