I wrote about 30 people at IU about the cheerleader shoving Mitch after the game. this is what was sent back to me(1 of 3 emails):
The Cheerleading program administratively reports to me, and I have been talking with our cheerleading coach, Julie Clements, since Dec. 23, 2004, about this event. It has taken some time to review this situation because of our Holiday schedule, the 17-inch snow situation that shut down our entire University for a day and the normal Holiday-reduced Assembly Hall operation.
Sitting at the scorer’s bench serving as our public address announcer, I was screened from seeing what actually happened with the specific Indiana University Cheerleader in the post-game situation. I did see the contact, however, during a replay I watched on an Indianapolis television station early morning Dec. 23, and then came into my Assembly Hall office Dec. 27 where I had received six e-mails from Charlotte fans about the situation including video links.
Julie and I have discussed this situation at length and also have talked with the young man about the severity of his actions. We have taken the appropriate disciplinary actions toward this young man as prescribed in the Athletics Code of Conduct. The male cheerleader in question fully understands his role representing Indiana University and will discharge his duties appropriately in future games.
I was one of those six who emailed. I got the exact same reply. Here’s what I sent out:
(Whoever I was contacting),
I just wanted to write you in regards of the men's basketball game between the Charlotte 49ers and the Indiana Hoosiers on Wednesday night. As you know, it was a hard fought game with intense emotions on both sides. Emotions were brought even higher by the last play of the game and the results, as again, I'm again sure you are very well aware. But, upon reviewing a video of the last 6 minutes of the game, I feel there is one man representing Indiana University who let his emotions get the best of him and subsequently acted in a way that was strongly misrepresentative of the university.
At the end of the game, after the final shot was signaled good and the Charlotte players are celebrating their hard earned victory, the IU cheerleaders began running towards center court, apparently because of a prior incident that I'm sure you're familir with also. During this, though one of Indiana's male cheerleaders clearly shoves a Charlotte player, Mitchell Baldwin (Number 20). The shove knocked Baldwin off balance and almost knocked him over.
In case you haven't seen it, the incident is in the last 6:30 video here: Link. The shove comes at about 5:19 in. It's a blatant shove, and not just running into each other. You see the cheerleader run to the Charlotte players, then clearly extend his arms, pushing Baldwin.
The cheerleader's actions were extremely dangerous, considering that many college basketball players would not have handled the situation as Mr. Baldwin did. Many players would have returned the shove of the cheerleader, or even worse. The actions were even more dangerous when put in perspective of recent events at sporting events. If anything was learend from those events, it's that any attempt at an altercation should be avoided at all costs. Mr. Baldwin handled the situation with class, though, as he didn't return the shove.
In viewing the incident, and seeing that it was a malicious shove, I think that actions should be taken against this man. I fully believe that he is not representative of Indiana University, their cheer program, or college sports in general. Thank you for your time in reviewing this incident, and I look forward to hearing back from you regarding it.
Obviously a slap on the wrist, but I wouldn’t be surprised if the guy was sat down in front of some high-end IU athletic folks and berated a bit. I would hope the same would be done to one of our male cheerleaders if he did the same thing to another team’s player. That kind of tripe doesn’t belong in college sports, expecially in light of the recent fighting incidents that SF4Nynah pointed out.
I talked to Mitch tonight at the women’s game. He said “I thought about shoving him back, but then I was like ‘hold on… national tv, now.’” And he said the cheerleader wasn’t specifically running his mouth to Mitch, but just running through the team yelling stuff like “You guys suck!” And this was after we won…
Guys this is a pretty classy response from IU. They should not get in the habit of announcing any specific discinplinay actions in public. I gainied from their message that this cheerleader was “dealt with” appropriately and that they were as embarrassed as we were enraged.
My question is what would the higher ups at IU done anything about this had someone not sent the emails? I do think it is a positive move that they investigated this and appear to have taken some action. Had Mitch returned the favor, it could have been ugly and a black mark both universities don’t need. As Norman and SF4Nynah pointed out, poor sportsmanship in society is all too prevalent and should not be tolerated in any form.
And we all should give #20 props for keeping his cool in a potentially heated moment.