The University of California, cradle of the Free Speech movement, was condemned Monday by the NAACP for a decision to accept a bowl bid to a postseason game in racially polarized Arizona.
The Golden Bears football team voted unanimously Sunday to go to the Copper Bowl in Arizona, which has become a hotbed of controversy following rejection by voters in the cactus state last week of Martin Luther King Day."We do not look kindly on this action by the University of California," said James Williams, head of public relations at the NAACP's national headquarters in Washington. "We just don't understand how a school with the University of California's tradition could have made this decision. The University has always been a campus that has fostered humanitarian ideals."
The vote was the first break in what appeared be a united front by sports teams - both professional and collegiate - to force Arizona to reconsider the King issue.
The NFL has threatened to pull the 1993 Super Bowl out of Arizona and the NBA may not name Phoenix the host for an upcoming All-Star Game which had planned to show off the city's soon to be completed basketball arena.
The Golden Bears will meet the University of Wyoming in Tucson, Ariz.