There will be the usual sellout crowd at Assembly Hall in Urbana, Il. this coming Wednesday night. The Fighting Illini are a bubble team this year for the NCAA Men's Basketball 65 team field in March, and need every win before the tournament to improve their chances for a berth. But this game will also mark the last dance for Chief Illiniwek. The University of Illinois' governing board, like those of many other universities before it, finally caved to pressure from the NCAA, a few Native Americans who were "hurt" by the dance, and a larger group of intolerant politically correct faculty and students. The school has dropped the Chief and his dance.
Now the University of Illinois can continue to host NCAA tournament events, and not lose that revenue (and home team advantage). The great majority of U of I alumni and students wanted to keep the Chief's dance routine a part of the home basketball and football games, but the 81 year tradition will soon be history.
Florida State University resisted the powers that be and won, keeping its Seminole monicker and emblem, and a small number of others have too (the University of North Dakota is still fighting and has gone to Court to keep the Fighting Sioux emblem all over its hockey rink, and not face NCAA penalties for doing so) .
The decision by the University of Illinois Board led to a record day of sales of Chief merchandise at college bookstores and sporting goods stores around the campus. Since Chief shirts and sweatpants might soon be collectors' items, students and other were fighting with their wallets to keep a bit of the long tradition alive.
These are the victories that the academic left and its ethnically hyper-sensitive allies live for. They have won another scalp.
Update: Here is a video of the Chief dancing.