The backstory is that, a week ago, the Mizzou athletic department met with some of the Antlers to express concern over offensive chants led by the rogue cheering group this season. Among those chants:
*To a ref: "Your eyes need more help than the people of the Philippines."
*While a player from Southeastern Louisiana shot a free throw: "Raise your hand if you thought Hurricane Katrina was a good thing."
*While a Southeastern Louisiana player was injured on the floor and being assessed by a personal trainer: "Check his hymen while you're down there!"; "Just give him a box of tampons, he'll be fine"; "Shoot him like a horse"; "Take him out back and throw him in the Dumpster." (This one occurred while the Tigers were up 30 points.)
*At a Hawaii player who was cut during a game: "If Magic Johnson can play with AIDS you can play with a little cut"; "Someone take our team to get AIDS tested."
There's much more.
The Antlers apparently ignored at least part of the athletic department's warning, because they were thrown out of Saturday's game against Gardner-Webb. Last night, against IUPUI, the Antlers showed up dressed in suits; they carried signs with kittens and butterflies on them and chanted things like "Respect is number one!" and "Sportsmanship!" Sometime in the second half, they apparently stepped up the obscenities and were again shown the door by university police.
That last "sportsmanship" bit is kind of funny, but the rest isn't. I went to Mizzou, and I'm all for a rowdy student fanbase. But what the Antlers do is just fucking stupid. Yes, they're just college kids, but they are old enough to know better. Every single one of the chants they're accused of making - and on St. Louis' The Morning After sports talk show this morning, the Antlers' "Grand Poobah" Emmett Delaney allowed that the list being circulated is "accurate, unfortunately" - should be grounds enough to boot them from games indefinitely. It's not just the children in the crowd who shouldn't have to hear that kind of profanity; ordinary people shouldn't be subjected to such terrible jokes. It's like sitting through a really aggressive open-mic night at Yuk Yuk's Comedy Club.
"We have, since this meeting, attempted to cut out any blatant misogyny, racial, or disaster jokes. Simply stated, we've tried to be better," some Antlers guy wrote on Twitter.
Let's hope so. Because as long as they're in the stands doing homophobic and racist cheers, the rest of us Mizzou fans and alums have to answer for these morons.