Members of Iowa's band were allegedly harassed during the rivalry game on Sept. 14 at Jack Trice Stadium.

By Jenna West
September 24, 2019

The future of the Cy-Hawk series is in question after Iowa president Bruce Harreld said he wants to see safety measures improved before playing another game.

"I’m not convinced at all that we should play this game again—here or there or anywhere—unless we can protect our fans, our band, and of course our athletes,” Harreld said in an interview with The Daily Iowan, the university's student newspaper.

Harreld's doubt over continuing the Iowa-Iowa State rivalry comes after Iowa band members were allegedly injured during the Sept. 14 game between the two schools at Jack Trice Stadium in Ames. The allegations include one band member allegedly being bruised after someone threw a beer can at him, while another member allegedly suffered broken ribs.

On Sept. 16, Iowa released a statement saying it would investigate the alleged harassment. However, Iowa athletic director Gary Barta announced on Sept. 19 that the university was shutting down the investigation, only to decide the following day to keep it open.

Iowa State athletic director Jamie Pollard held a press conference on Tuesday and said Iowa's band exited the stadium at the wrong gate, which could have caused fans and the band to come in contact with one another. While he called fans heckling and throwing items at the band "inexcusable," Pollard said Iowa State investigators have had trouble launching an investigation because no complainants have come forward.

Harreld told The Daily Iowan that he reached out to officials at Iowa State and Northern Iowa about discussing safety measures with athletic directors, band directors and safety officials to try to prevent harassment in the future. He said officials are open to a meeting but have not picked a time yet. As for the future of the Cy-Hawk series, he'll make a decision once safety measures improve.

"I think I’ll consider playing this game again. But I'm not going to put our band or our students or our athletes in harms' way. Something happened, and it isn't right and we can all do better."

When asked if Iowa will host future Cy-Hawk series games, he said he's "clearly expecting we can work through this."

“If for some reason one party or the other doesn’t come to the table, then no, why would we?”

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