Boone is dead, long live Boone
The University of Denver’s controversial unofficial mascot, Denver Boone, was, as expected, effectively condemned by Undergraduate Student Government (USG) tonight — but the alumni-funded figure will, at least for the moment, continue to appear at DU athletic events (starting with Saturday’s crucial WAC basketball game at home against New Mexico State) and promote school spirit, according to a statement on Boone’s Facebook Page.
I could not attend tonight’s USG meeting, at which the matter was discussed, and so details are sketchy at this point. As I wrote earlier, the plan (according to the DU Clarion) was for USG to try and marginalize Boone (even though, under the circumstances, they don’t really have the power to “ban” him) by enacting a formal policy that organizations funded with student fees may not purchase Boone-related merchandise. However, that policy was not to take effect until a new, official DU mascot is selected by a task force. A bill establishing these rules was expected to pass tonight — and a bill did pass, but apparently it was “amended" in some way, and it is not yet clear to me exactly what passed.
For now, as I await more information about what happened happened tonight, Boone’s statement is basically all I have to go on. Here’s the key excerpt:
Tonight, the USG voted on the bill regarding the Boone Resolution, and despite the 230+ of you who signed the petition in the past 24 hours in regards to delaying the passing of this bill [more here on the petition], the bill passed through the Senate. With that being said, I (meaning Boone) will still be at all of the sporting events, and with the student and alumni support, will still be a major part of DU spirit on campus. I will still make funny youtube videos, plenty of sport updates via facebook and twitter (@DU_Boone), and who knows what else the future holds!
UPDATE: Adam Hammerman, who led the pro-Boone forces at tonight’s meeting, tells me the Clarion's summary of the bill's contents was “pretty spot on,” but that the bill also includes “immediate suspension of any student [organization] that uses the Boone image.”
Hammerman added that the resolution “doesn’t do any physical damage to Boone,” but is mainly “just a public statement…that USG is done with Boone and wants to phase him out ASAP, despite the fact that many students still support and want Boone. They completely disregarded the petition and basically said they don’t care.”
In other words, Boone’s days are probably numbered. But he’ll remain a presence on the Magness Arena sidelines for now.