October 3, 2003 Volume 19, Number 5
An Open Letter to the Western Illinois University
Looking ahead to this weekend’s
Homecoming activities, we write this letter to ask for your
help and cooperation. This year’s Homecoming football
game carries with it a much higher level of emotion and
anticipation as our campus welcomes the Hilltoppers of Western
Kentucky University. As much as we would like to forget
the postgame events of last December, we all have a responsibility
to learn from that unfortunate incident.
For the past nine months, the Athletics
Department has focused on appropriate game behavior. The
players involved in the postgame incident have been reprimanded
and disciplined. The coaching staff and the football team
have participated in seminars and presentations addressing
personal responsibility. We are confident these efforts
will prove very worthwhile, not just for this particular
game but for all athletic events through the year.
We were very proud of the conduct
of our fans during the I-AA postgame last year. We now ask
you, community members and students, again to consider your
responsibility as representatives of Western Illinois University.
Everyone—players, coaches, and fans—has a responsibility
to conduct themselves appropriately. It is certainly expected
and appreciated that we create a home field advantage and
we encourage you to be loud and boisterous and cheer for
your Leathernecks. A good sport cheers for her or his team.
It is poor fan behavior, however, to cheer against our opponents.
As a supporter attending the game this weekend, you have
the right to cheer your team on loudly. You do not have
the right to make physical contact with any player, coach
or game official and you are never allowed onto the field.
Please remain in the bleachers at all times. Intimidating
actions or taunting directed at opposing student-athletes,
coaches or game officials will not be tolerated and violators
are subject to discipline and could be removed from the
The Western Illinois University/Macomb
community is very proud of its football team and we have
every confidence our coaches and student-athletes will represent
our community and university with honor and integrity. Last
year the campus adopted the theme “Now is the Time….Civility,”
Saturday’s game provides the perfect opportunity to
showcase our civility while advancing our efforts at being
We encourage you to participate in
as many Homecoming activities as possible and come out to
Hanson Field and support your Leatherneck football team.
Thank you in advance for your cooperation. Have a safe and
enjoyable Homecoming weekend.
Tim M. Van Alstine, Director