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December 3, 2009

Oregon Law’s Competition not Conflict teams up with university presidents and the UO Athletic Director

Video message to encourage civil fan behavior at Civil War football game

Can a war be civil?

In anticipation of the biggest rivalry game in their institution’s histories, University of Oregon President Richard Lariviere, and Oregon State University President Ed Ray recorded a message to their fans that will be played at the start of Thursday’s Civil War match-up. UO Athletics Director Mike Bellotti also appears.

The video is part of a series created by Oregon Law’s Competition not Conflict (CnC) project to promote positive and passionate competition and reduce incidents of inappropriate fan behavior. When fans watch this final video message of the football season, they will see a compilation of Duck-Beaver match-ups, paired with the concepts of “respect,” “honor,” “pride,” and “dignity.”

Bellotti, Lariviere and Ray urge Duck and Beaver fans to remember that some of us are Ducks, and some of us are Beavers, and together, we are Oregon.

The video also will be available online at the Competition not Conflict project’s webpage,www.competitionnotconflict.com.

“While we compete once each year in intense competition on the football field, we are otherwise working together to fulfill our public educational mission to the state,” said Lariviere.

According to CnC director Tori Klein, as youth, collegiate and professional sports have been tainted by “unsportsmanlike behavior,” the university presidents jumped at the chance to use this opportunity to urge everyone to participate in this rivalry in a controlled and respectful way.

“Remember, both schools have great students and great fans. Everyone should exhibit their best fan behavior and still remain friends after the game,” said Ray.

Bellotti also will be included in the message during the game, and has a message of his own on the web. “We here at the U of O love competition. I want the fans to cheer their hearts out for these teams, but also to maintain respect for the game of college football and the efforts of the competitors,” Bellotti said.

“We all believe that this historic game should be remembered for the athleticism of the athletes, the strategy of the coaches, and the positive and passionate support from all the fans,” said Klein.

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