Return Of Chief Illiniwek Proposed – And Ignored?

Today’s column from CBS Chicago

(CBS) Banished from athletic events at the University of Illinois six years ago, Chief Illiniwek is now standing on the hypothetical sidelines in Champaign, holding a new proposal for his return.

But Chancellor Phyllis Wise won’t let the Chief on the field.

Or even truly consider that possibility.

And speaking as an Illinois alum, that’s just not right.

This morning, the Champaign News-Gazette broke the story that the Council of Chiefs – a group comprised of the men who once portrayed the university’s former symbol – has submitted a plan to the U. of I. administration that would bring back Chief Illiniwek for twice-a-year, on-field appearances for a two-year trial basis.

And here’s the twist: the Peoria Tribe is actually involved.

According to the News-Gazette, the council’s proposal calls for a Chief portrayer to appear on the field of two campus events in a year. There would be no dancing involved, and the Illiniwek costume would be developed by the Council of Chiefs in consultation with the Peoria Tribe of Oklahoma – one of the original Native American tribes of the Illini Confederation.

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