Monday, March 30, 2015

NCAA Should Pull Events Out Of Indiana

As most of you know by now, the state of Indiana is passing a law that makes it alright for businesses to discriminate against homosexuals if it is part of their religious beliefs.  You may also know that Indianapolis is the site of next weekend's Final Four.  Wonder if that topic will come up?

It should.

The NCAA has to do something.  Right now, the NCAA won't hold postseason events in the states of South Carolina and Mississippi because they still fly the confederate flag (though there has been a big flap about South Carolina hosting NCAA Women's basketball tournament games this year).  The NCAA should look into bans into states that have outright laws that discriminate like this.  I know it could be a slippery slope since this could be extended to states that ban gay marriage or some other forms of discriminatory policies, but it should at least be approached.

Sports can do that.  Remember that the NFL pulled a Super Bowl out of Arizona due to that's states refusal to recognize the Martin Luther King Jr holiday.  The NCAA has already made a stance on the confederate flag.  Those are symbolic things.  This is a reality of lawful discrimination.  The NCAA, which is based in Indianapolis and holds the Final Four there every four or five years, needs to make another statement (well, other than the strong official statement they did make).  

Next year's NCAA women's basketball Final Four will be in Indianapolis.  How can that happen?  Move it somewhere else.  The men's Final Four will be back there in 2021.  Threaten to move that.  No other NCAA sanctioned postseason event should be held there either, and conferences that can, should try to move postseason events away.

Judging what NCAA president Mark Emmert said, "We will work diligently to assure student-athletes competing in, and visitors attending, next week's Men's Final Four in Indianapolis are not impacted negatively by this bill.  Moving forward, we intend to closely examine the implications of this bill and how it might affect future events as well as our workforce."

That is a good first step.

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