Chief Illinek’s Last Dance at Illinois Basketball Halftime

Chief IlliniwekThe University of Illinois Board of Trustees’ decision to deactivate the Chief Illiniwek mascot led the NCAA to lift sanctions that had barred Illinois from hosting postseason sports since 2005. The NCAA had deemed Chief Illiniwek an offensive use of American Indian imagery. Chief Illiniwek was created in 1926. Each year a student performed an Indian dance at home football and basketball games in buckskin regalia and impressive headdress.University of Illinois will keep the terms Illini and Fighting Illini. Activists against the chief, such as John McKinn, a Maricopa Indian who is assistant director of academic programming for the school’s Native American studies program, think the use of those terms is still offensive and should be abolished, as well.

Basketball Final: Illinois 54, Michigan 42