clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Stanford official apologizes for band's lampoon of Irish

Stanford University's athletic director apologized to Catholic school officials after its football pre-game and half-time shows lampooned the Irish potato famine and referred to the Irish as "stinking drunks."

Ted Leland issued a written apology to more than 30 local school administrators who signed a letter condemning the university band's shows, performed during Saturday's Stanford-Notre Dame game.The parody of the potato famine featured "Seamus O'Hungry," whose "sparse cultural heritage consisted only of fighting, then starving."

The band's act was tasteless, Leland wrote. "In their sophomoric attempt at humor, the band crossed the line from funny to obnoxious and offensive." No punishment was planned, officials said.

Band manager Scott McKissen offered no apology. People were overreacting, he said Tuesday.

Tim Brosnan, principal of Archbishop Mitty, a Catholic high school in nearby San Jose, said he appreciates the apology - but not the university's refusal to punish the band.