David Dubois, new head of sport at Ryerson, benches intramural team’s Filmores jerseys
By Noah Love
Ryerson administration is forcing a strip-club sponsored team to take their jerseys off.
Before the intramural season got underway, Rocky Boyer, a fourth-year architecture student, asked Howard Adams, the manager of Filmores Hotel at 212 Dundas St. East, if he wanted to endorse a 15-player intermural hockey club. As well as being a hotel, Filmores is also a 24-hour nude bar.
Adams agreed to buy the players’ jerseys, on two conditions: One, that they paid $10 (Adams paid for the rest) and two, that they stopped by the bar for drinks after league games.
The club is on the way home for many of the players, so the partnership worked out well for both parties.
That is, until a first-year journalism student did a story on the team for a broadcast class. He started asking RAC officials, including the new head of sports and recreation at Ryerson, David Dubois, about the hockey team. In turn they started asking questions about the nature of Filmores business.
When they realized that Filmores was a strip club, they called a meeting with team officials to discuss the design of the club sponsored jersey, which promptly features a nude woman. It is the nightclub’s logo.
“They asked us to come in and talk about the jerseys,” Boyer said. “When we got there, they had a letter written saying we had to scrap them.”
Athletics decided before the meeting to censor the jersey.
“We had a good idea of what was on it, so we had a letter drafted ahead of time,” said Dubois. “If they had come in and the jerseys had been appropriate, we would’ve just said we made a mistake.”
Representatives of the team argued in vain to keep the shirts in the league.
“[The administration] said we couldn’t be sponsored by certain companies,” said fourth-year business management student Andrew Abercrombie.
“There’s no policy for intramural sponsorship,” said Dubois. “We will put something in place for next year. All sponsorships will be carefully reviewed next year.”
“We told them we didn’t want them to be affiliated with Filmores but we appreciate that they don’t want to pay for more jerseys,” said Dubois, who was hired last spring.
The administration made a compromise for this season, by allowing the team to keep the jerseys and having the school pay for the image of the woman blacked out.
Dubois said they will allow the team to wear the modified jerseys this year if they want to, but will disqualify Filmores from sponsoring any team next year.
“Athletics can’t accept sponsorship from cigarette companies or alcohol producers. We consider this unacceptable too,” he said.
But the team is tossing around a couple alternative ideas.
“We might wear the jerseys inside out,” said Abercrombie. “If people ask why, then we’ve made our point.”
The team might use other jerseys with painted numbers on the back, Boyer said.
“I can see where [the administration] are coming from,” said Abercrombie. “But I still think that without the policy we should be able to continue wearing the jerseys.”