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Statement from Chancellor and Athletic Director on Anti-Asian Incident

January 20, 2022

We are reaching out today to condemn the offensive anti-Asian gestures made by a man in Badgers apparel at Tuesday’s men’s basketball game at Northwestern University and to share the actions being taken.

Our events should be a place for everyone to enjoy the excitement of college sports. The University of Wisconsin, Northwestern University and the Big Ten Conference promote good sportsmanship, appropriate fan behavior and a welcoming atmosphere for all fans at all athletic events. Racist behavior at our venues is unacceptable and we will take action promptly to address it.

We also want to acknowledge that hateful behavior like this still happens far too often, on and off campus – towards members of our Asian, Pacific Islander and Desi American community as well as other marginalized communities. It inflicts pain and fear and causes students, staff and faculty to feel unwelcome and unsafe. Most of the time it is not captured on video and the perpetrators are not identified. In this case, we are grateful to the fans that documented and shared this incident.

We appreciate Northwestern events staff promptly removing the man from the game. The ticket-holder has been identified by the Northwestern and Wisconsin athletic departments. He is not a current UW–Madison student or employee.

We are notifying him that he is no longer welcome at any future UW Athletics event and are prohibiting him from purchasing tickets through our platform.

We remain committed to supporting the individuals and communities that are harmed by this behavior and ensuring they know they belong and are valued. We will take all appropriate actions under university policies in response to incidents like this. We encourage anyone witnessing or experiencing an incident to report it. Being a Badger means speaking out and supporting our fellow Badgers.

Rebecca M. Blank

Chris McIntosh
Director of Athletics