DES MOINES, Iowa — The University of Iowa and Iowa State Police say the investigation into several incidents surrounding the Cy-Hawk rivalry game continue moving forward.
Several of the incidents listed in an Iowa State University press conference on Tuesday concern issues when the Hawkeye Marching Band was exiting the stadium and field after the rivalry game.
Former Hawkeye Marching Band Member Anna Mayer said at the Cy-Hawk games in 2015 and 2017, she doesn’t remember having trouble exiting the game or exiting with a lot of fans around.
Channel 13 obtained a copy of an email correspondence between the Cyclone Marching Band Director Christian Carichner and the Hawkeye Marching Band Director Eric Bush that discusses the entrance the band is supposed to use but it doesn’t explain which gate they were supposed to exit.
“In summary, gate 3 is the south end zone (Blue Star). I recommend walking around the EAST side of jack trice (blue line), as you cannot walk around the west side due to construction (red star). Your section is 26, very close to gate 3. It is not a wide section, but a very deep section, and you have the entire area. It’s 501 seats, which ought to be plenty of room,” Carichner said in the email.
The email also describes where the buses are supposed to be located, “Buses and truck can move to south 4th street during the 4th quarter if you wish to load there post-game. Right on the north side of the stadium in the 4th quarter. Police will direct you where to park. Please let us know if you do NOT want to do this and instead walk back to your susses,” Carichner said in the email.
ISU Police said during their press conference on Tuesday that at some point on game day the Hawkeye Marching Band was instructed to use gate one instead of gate five where the crowd of fans were.
“Our security personnel advised the Iowa Marching Band that it would be best for them to exit to the east through gate one, like our band did and had no issues, because the gate was wide open. For whatever reason the Iowa Marching Band did not do that,” Iowa State University Director of Athletics Jamie Pollard said.
Iowa State Police Chief Michael Newton said after the press conference on Tuesday, “We have received more information that will assist us in conducting an investigation. We are happy people were willing to come forward and we will continue to move this investigation forward.”
Channel 13 also obtained a heavily redacted police report from the University of Iowa showing there are three victims who made official police reports regarding incidents surrounding the Cy-Hawk game.
Mayer said she experienced first hand some of the heckling treatment the band receives at different games including in Ames during the 2015 and 2017 Cy-Hawk rivalry games
“They yell at us and the most memorable was ‘Oh you know what Iowa stands for? I outta went to Ames,’ but so there’s a lot of just yelling and heckling but never anything that bad,” Mayer said.
Mayer said she never felt unsafe, but thinks it’s important to take these alleged incidents seriously.
“I do believe what I’ve heard from the HMB students about what happened and it surprised me, but I think it should be taken seriously because that should have never happened,” Mayer said.
Pollard said he understands how important it is to band members when they get the opportunity to travel with the team to away games and play on a grand stage.
“Those that know me know that we welcome every marching band it is part of the collegiate environment. We have three bands coming here yet this year. It pains me to think that this incident could result in not only the series not being played but that those young men and women in the bands wouldn’t get to perform,” Pollard said on Tuesday.
Mayer said she hopes these issues can be resolved so that other band members don’t feel unsafe or discouraged to travel to road games.
“I always loved traveling with the Hawkeye Marching Band and I don’t want other students to lose the opportunity to travel because it is really fun and it’s great to interact with other bands. And the other bands have always been great and nice to be around. And I hope that something can be resolved so that traveling and being comfortable in other places continues to happen,” Mayer said.