- Associated Press - Tuesday, September 1, 2015

MANHATTAN, Kan. (AP) - Kansas State students will have to sign a sportsmanship pledge before they can pick up their tickets for sporting events this year.

The pledge requires students to refrain from using profanity and inappropriate chants and to show respect for all athletes, coaches, fans and officials, The Wichita Eagle (https://bit.ly/1UoOOGH ) reported. Students and athletic administrators together came up with the idea of the sportsmanship pledge, the first in the Big 12 Conference.

The pledge followed problems that arose during a Kansas State-Kansas basketball game last season in Manhattan.

Students chanted inappropriate language during the game and stormed the court afterward, and one student seemed to intentionally bump a Kansas player.

“We want to take the lead in the Big 12 and try to have our student section be representative of the type of environment that should be present at college sporting events,” said Scott Garrett, K-State’s senior associate athletic director for external operations.

If a student violates the sportsmanship pledge, he or she risks punishment from the school, including having their tickets taken away for the year’s remainder. Kansas State officials say students who behave badly during games will be dealt with on a case-by-case basis.

Garrett said he hasn’t heard any complaints from students about the pledge. He said a student sportsmanship committee comprised of leaders from across the campus has been positive about the latest effort.

Prior to the pledge, Garrett said students have been removed from games because they were drinking alcohol or for wearing profanity on their shirts.

“Basically, we don’t want to surprise anyone. Here are our expectations and here is what can happen if you don’t meet those expectations down the road. I hope we don’t have to do that,” he said. “That wasn’t the intent of making them sign this pledge. Our students are prepared to take ownership of really providing a competitive environment without modifying the game-day experience.”

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Information from: The Wichita (Kan.) Eagle, https://www.kansas.com


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