College Athletic Team 'Suspended' for Wearing T-Shirt (Updated: President Reinstates Team)
4:06 PM, May 3, 2012 • By DANIEL HALPER
Members of Tufts University's men's crew team have been suspended for wearing what some are calling an inappropriate T-shirts to an annual school function, Spring Fling, an end of year school wide concert.
"The tank tops in question have the phrase 'check out our cox' written across the middle, a reference to the 'coxswain' (pronounced coxun) in crew who sits at the front of the boat and gives instructions to the other rowers," the Tufts Daily reports. "Below the words is an image depicting four rowers in a boat and a coxswain in front of them who appears to be shouting directions." (An image of the picture can be viewed here.)
This year's Spring Fling lineup included Lupe Fiasco, White Panda, and Guster.
It was not the school that suspended the rowers, however; it was the coach, who reportedly made the decision after a so-called "bias incident" report was anonymously received by the Massachusetts school. "[T]he report stated that the shirts were offensive toward women and promoted a culture of rape and sexual aggression."
Not all members of the crew team wore the T-shirts, and only those who did were suspended.
But the suspension "will only affect the rowers’ participation in this weekend’s New England Championships, not their university standing," the Tufts Daily reports. "Neither the novice nor the varsity squad will have enough eligible rowers to fill a boat, and therefore neither team will compete this weekend. In addition, the team’s co-captains were asked to surrender their captain positions."
Members of the crew team have written letters of apology.
UPDATE: Tufts president Anthony Monaco has reinstated the shirt-wearing members of the crew team: