Husker hackles were raised Saturday night when a photograph popped up on social media of a whiteboard in the Stanford volleyball team’s locker room that appeared to mock Nebraska and its fans.
Shortly after the Cardinal won a five-set national championship match over Nebraska in Minneapolis, NCAA Volleyball posted a celebratory photo from inside the Stanford locker room. The tweet was deleted, but not before several Twitter users took screen shots and shared them.
The draw depicted the Stanford Tree, the unofficial mascot of the school’s marching band, making crude gestures toward Herbie Husker, the Nebraska mascot. One hand sprouting from the tree flipped the bird while another pointed a gun.
The incident prompted an apology Saturday from Stanford Athletic Director Bernard Muir.
“We are aware of a picture taken in our team’s locker room following the NCAA Women’s Volleyball Championship and posted on social media,” Muir said in a statement. “The image in the background of the picture is unacceptable and does not reflect the values of Stanford University. We have reached out to our colleagues at Nebraska to express our sincerest apologies to the university and its women’s volleyball program. We regret detracting from what was otherwise a great night for the sport of women’s volleyball.”
Twitter reaction from Nebraska fans was mostly hostile, though some said that people were overreacting to the photo. Many commented that the Stanford coach and players should have apologized instead of the athletic director.
A Nebraska Athletic Department spokesperson said Sunday afternoon that Nebraska had no comment on the issue.