Stanford Apologizes for Band's Offensive BYU Halftime Show | Athletic Business

Stanford Apologizes for Band's Offensive BYU Halftime Show

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The Stanford University athletic department issued a statement to Brigham Young University's student newspaper regarding a halftime show performed during Saturday’s football game between the teams at Stanford Stadium, saying it “did not reflect Stanford University’s values of religious freedom and diversity, inclusion and belonging.”

As reported by Deseret News, the stadium video board displayed wording that referenced the doctrine of eternal marriage held by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, the institution that sponsors BYU, during the halftime show. The show “involved a pair of women being married to each other, with the officiator using terms and phrases taken from sacred temple ceremonies within The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints,” according to The Daily Universe.


In a statement published by The Daily Universe on Monday night, a Stanford spokesperson stated, “The Leland Stanford Junior University Marching Band (LSJUMB) has a long history of lighthearted and satirical halftime performances. Unfortunately, some of the language that was used in Saturday’s halftime show did not reflect Stanford University’s values of religious freedom and diversity, inclusion and belonging.

“The LSJUMB deeply regrets that this performance caused offense to spectators, and the halftime performance review and approval process is being adjusted to ensure that issues like this do not occur again.”

Related: Student 'Tree' Mascot Suspended Over 'Stanford Hates Fun' Sign

The Stanford band, long known for its irreverence, has targeted BYU in the past. According to Deseret News, the last time the Cougars and Cardinal faced each other at Stanford, in 2004, the school’s athletic director at the time, Ted Leland, apologized after the LSJUMB performed a skit during halftime that “poked fun at polygamy.”

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