Skip to main content

U of M hopes to ban 'Redskins' during November Vikings game

  • Author:
  • Updated:

The University of Minnesota is working with the Minnesota Vikings on a plan that would disallow the use of the Washington Redskins nickname when they visit the Vikings at TCF Bank Stadium in November, according to the Star Tribune.

U of M President Eric Kaler wrote letter on Aug. 1 to U.S. Representative Betty McCollum in which he said the Redskins name is “offensive and should be replaced.” He also assured McCollum that the university is working with the Vikings to "eliminate the use" of Washington's nickname when they visit the Vikings at TCF Bank Stadium on Nov. 2.

Kaler was responding to a letter McCollum wrote in June imploring Vikings owner Zygi Wilf to oppose any use of Washington's "racist" team name, according to MN Daily. She also said the promotion of the Redskins name would violate the Board of Regents’ Equity, Diversity, Equal Opportunity, and Affirmative Action Policy.

Lester Bagley, Vikings vice president of stadium development and public affairs, said the team takes the issue "very seriously" but doesn't yet have a "game plan" for their game against Washington.

Deadspin tracked down a response from a Washingon team spokesman.

Redskins spokesman Tony Wyllie said Wednesday night that the team disagrees with the school's effort to bar the Redskins' name for the game at TCF Bank Stadium, the University of Minnesota stadium. "We have met many native Americans from Minnesota who agree with our position and feel we are using the term correctly and honorably, " he said.

The Vikings hosted and defeated Washington last year in a game played at the now demolished Metrodome. The Metrodome's stadium panel denied requests to ban the name from multiple groups, including the American Civil Liberties Union.

Governor Mark Dayton was quoted last year as saying the Redskins name is "racist." Sports announcer Bob Costas called it an "insult" and a "slur," and former Viking safety Joey Browner joined the American Indian Movement's march to the Dome last year to protest the nickname.

The Vikings will spend the next two NFL seasons playing at the Gophers' home stadium before moving into their own new $975 million stadium in 2016.

Washington's owner Daniel Snyder maintains that his team's name isn't going to change.

“A Redskin is a football player,” Snyder said in a not-yet-released interview with ESPN, via the Washington Post. “A Redskin is our fans. The Washington Redskin fan base represents honor, represents respect, represents pride. Hopefully winning. And it's a positive. Taken out of context -- you can take things out of context all over the place -- but in this particular case, it is what it is. It's very obvious.”

Next Up

Screen Shot 2022-08-08 at 7.13.33 AM

Family identifies man killed by police in Otsego

The 21-year-old was reportedly experiencing 'mental health challenges' and allegedly had a knife when deputies open fire.

88 S 11th St, Minneapolis, Minnesota - April 2022 (1)

Gun found on WCCO-TV rooftop after homicide in Minneapolis

It's the 56th death reported as a homicide in Minneapolis this year.

Screen Shot 2022-08-07 at 11.43.15 AM

Deputies fatally shoot man in Wright County

Police claim the man, who had allegedly been experiencing a mental health crisis, was armed with a knife.

Ambulance hospital emergency

17-year-old killed in northern Minnesota crash Saturday

The other drive involved in the crash, a 75-year-old man, sustained life-threatening injuries.


Alcohol a factor as driver rolls ATV into corn field, injuring 3

The crash occurred in Lake Lillian Saturday night.

Minneapolis police

Man dies after being found shot at Minneapolis' 38th and Chicago

Responders were called to the scene early Sunday morning.

Screen Shot 2022-08-07 at 6.34.12 AM

7 children arrested after 'disturbance' at Cabela's, escape in stolen vehicle

Employees called police saying the children were stealing goods from the store.

Screen Shot 2022-08-06 at 6.16.49 PM

Fire sparks evacuation from apartment building, man arrested for arson

Police and fire crews responded to the fire just before 9 a.m. Saturday.

Flickr - utility pole power line

Morning storms cause power outages, ensuing problems in Eagan

There have been reports of disabled traffic lights and issues at local businesses.

kim crockett facebook sos

GOP nominee questions if those with disabilities, non-English speakers should be able to vote

Crockett made the comments in a 2020 radio interview following a ruling from the Minnesota Supreme Court.


Jury: MN pharmacist did not violate woman's rights by refusing her morning-after pill

Gender Justice, the advocacy group that brought about the lawsuit, says it will appeal the decision.