Athletic director urges LSU fans to report bad behavior

Updated: October 10, 2003, 12:24 PM ET
ESPN

BATON ROUGE, La. -- Dozens of people were arrested at LSU's last home game, and Athletic Director Skip Bertman wants better behavior at Saturday's game against Florida.

He also wants bad fans reported at once.

"We have asked people to be on the lookout," Bertman said in an interview. "Use your cell phone. Call the police."

"We're not talking about people yelling 'Tiger Bait!" at opposing fans, Bertman said.

But anyone who sees any criminal act or "consistent harassment" of the other team's fans should report it, he said in his "Cyber-Side Chat" message posted on the LSU athletics Web site and e-mailed to fans each Thursday.

Bertman said 30 to 35 people were arrested Sept. 20, during the game against Georgia. He estimated 115,000 people were on the campus for the game, meaning more than 20,000 couldn't get into the sold-out stadium.

He listed four of the incidents reported by police:

--A male Georgia fan was hospitalized after the portable toilet he was in was turned over and he was assaulted as he tried to climb out;

--A Georgia administrator wearing her school's colors was hit by a mudball;

--A Georgia couple found a flag they placed on their car burned and lying in a ditch after the game and their car's hood dented;

--A female Georgia fan reported being subjected to lewd comments.

The number of incidents wasn't unusually high for a sold-out game, Bertman said.

"Consider that one percent of 115,000 people is over 1,100 people who throw items, curse, are inebriated, obnoxious or otherwise disruptive, and can make a visit to Tiger Stadium miserable for our fans or visitors to our campus," he wrote.

"We'll never solve all of our problems. But I implore those who share LSU's sense of sportsmanship and pride to report to authorities when you see something amiss," he wrote.

Saturday's game against Florida also is sold out. Bertman said it's expected that over 100,000 fans will again be on campus for the 2:30 p.m. kickoff.

LSU will not be taking extra security measures to curb fan behavior, Bertman said.

Crowd vigilantes are not welcome, either.

"We don't want you to take matters into your own hands," he wrote. "Sometimes confrontations with other fans can just escalate the situation. Please call on our police or game marshals for assistance, whether inside or outside the stadium."

Bertman said he believes LSU fans have an unfairly bad reputation caused by a small number of troublemakers.

"The number one thing I've heard in three years as athletic director is 'Can you do something about ...' or 'Listen to what happened to me at the game ..." Bertman said. "I've heard that more times than I would like.

"I chose to do something."

This story is from ESPN.com's automated news wire. Wire index