Ah, the great rivalries in college sports: Duke-UNC, Michigan-Ohio St., Texas-Oklahoma. There's one rivalry that's been overlooked, but with this story you'll want to pay more attention.
For years it's been a tradition for Kansas St. fans to smuggle live chickens into the arena when they play Kansas, in order to throw them onto the court during player introductions. This is done in order to mock the rivals, and their Jayhawk mascot. When the two foes met last week three live chickens made their way onto the court during player intros. And since we all know chickens can't fly, we know they didn't get there by themselves. Check out the video above to see for yourself. Pay attention, it happens right away...
Said KU Coach Bill Self:
“My first year here one of them hit me,” Self said. “I’m glad we were on the other side of the court this year. It didn’t upset me. That’s tradition here that’s gone on many years, I guess. I only saw one (chicken). Security got them off the court.”
Of the atmosphere, Self said: “It was classy, the way a rivalry should be. I thought the crowd was great and our guys responded well again.”
Classy, huh? Well not everyone agrees with Self. PETA, first and foremost. They wrote a letter to Kansas State complaining. And begins the absurd.
According to PETA's letter, chickens are "very intelligent and inquisitive animals" that appeared to have been subjected to "deafening noise, bright lights, terror, abusive handling and likely death for the sake of amusement." I haven't had too much exposure to chickens over the course of my life, but somehow the words intelligent and inquisitive have never come to mind. Usually it's something more like "leaner than red meat."
Kansas St. apparently found PETA's letter more convincing than I did - for they have now condemned the chicken toss, vowing to eject anyone who does so at a future game.
It's obvious that PETA means business, and they're NOT fooling around.
Said PETA director Debbie Leahy: "Any student who throws live birds on a basketball court should be thrown out of school."
First off, these PETA folks have got to have better things on their agenda than this. I agree that this isn't the most humane activity for a chicken (or even close). But I don't believe it warrants being expelled. Imagine having to respond to that question on a job interview. All in all, it's pretty funny. Only a college student would be ingenious enough, and have enough time on their hands to do something like this. And it it's definitely brought more excitement to the KU-KSU rivalry than Bob Huggins or Bill Walker ever could.