Native American Descendants Help ASU with Mascot Issue

NOVEMBER 14, 2005 - Posted at 8:10 a.m. CST

JONESBORO, AR - Some American Indian descendants are helping Arkansas State athletic officials adress an NCAA ban that prohibits the use of  "hostile and abusive" mascots, logos and nicknames.  ASU's sports teams are named the Indians and the Lady Indians.

A group has presented research on the area's American Indian history to the community, and people of Cherokee descent spoke with ASU athletic officials at two on-campus meetings Friday and Saturday.  They commended the school for presenting Indians in a positive light but said some of the references to the culture are inaccurate.

David Wahyahneetah, whose name translates to Youngwolf, said he believes it will just be a matter of time before the school is sued if it keeps the Indians mascot.

ASU officials have provided the NCAA with a list of questions for a November 28 video conference.  University President Les Wyatt and Athletic Director Dean Lee also plan to meet with NCAA officials.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)