GREELEY, Colo. – Unable to persuade a local school to change a mascot name that offends them, a group of American Indian students at the University of Northern Colorado named their intramural basketball team "The Fighting Whities."
The team chose a white man as its mascot to raise awareness of stereotypes that some cultures endure.
"The message is, let's do something that will let people see the other side of what it's like to be a mascot," said Solomon Little Owl, a member of the team and director of Native American Student Services at the university.
The team, made up of American Indians, Hispanics and Anglos, wears jerseys that say "Every thang's going to be all white."
The students are upset with Eaton High School for using an American Indian caricature on the team logo. The team is called the Reds.
"It's not meant to be vicious, it is meant to be humorous," said Ray White, a Mohawk American Indian on the team. "It puts people in our shoes."
Eaton School District superintendent John Nuspl said the school's logo is not derogatory and called the group's criticism insulting. "There's no mockery of Native Americans with this," he said.