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Sunday, September 21, 2014

Antlers struggle for seats

Oct. 22, 1996

While MU tiger fans pray to get one of the prized low numbers in the upcoming basketball lottery, the Antlers are just hoping they can all sit together.

Following the 1994-95 men's basketball season, the Antlers, a student spirit group, were suspended for what was deemed as inappropriate behavior by the athletic department. The athletes were stripped from their group seating in "A" section for their behavior.

"The suspension is indefinite but for at least one year," said John Martin, a member of the Antlers. "At the end of one year, the suspension was to be reconsidered. So far, there has been no reconsideration this year."

Martin said the Antlers attempted to contact MU Athletic Director Joe Castiglione regarding the scheduling of a conference to discuss the reinstating of their group seats.

"When we called we said that we were concerned students with questions regarding seating," said Antler Poobah Bryan Grieb. "Two days later, Mr. Castiglione's secretary said that he was too busy to talk to students."

The Antlers said they feel they are getting a definite message from Castiglione but not the message which they would like to receive.

"I don't foresee us ever being reinstated because as far as the athletic department is concerned, we are a black spot in the university," Martin said.

Last year, the Antlers were separated in the seat lottery.

Grieb doesn't see many options for the Antlers but is hopeful of obtaining group seating in "C" section.

"We took the high road all last year in the hopes of getting our seats back," Grieb said. "[If we don't have a chance to get our seats back], I can't see the high road as possible."

The Antlers' efforts are not without notice in the athletic department though.

"[The Antlers] are a fun part of the spirit groups," Smith said. "I back them 1,000 percent."

Martin also said there is a correlation between fan support and team success.

"The team alone is not going to make it there" they need fan support," Martin said. "Fan apathy has become notorious in this town."

Castiglione did not return The Maneater's phone calls.

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