University apologizes after Boozer's mother injured

Posted: Wednesday, January 31, 2001

Calling it a case of "hooliganism," University of Maryland President C.D. Mote Jr. apologized on Monday to former Juneau resident Renee Boozer, who suffered a concussion when she was hit in the face by bottles thrown by Terrapins fans last weekend.

Duke center Carlos Boozer Jr., a 1999 Juneau-Douglas High School graduate, told reporters his mother was hit by both a glass and a plastic bottle after Duke's 98-96 overtime victory Saturday night at Maryland's Cole Field House. The mothers of two other Duke players -- Jason Williams and Chris Duhon -- were also hit by bottles after the game, but Renee Boozer was the only one to require medical attention.

The Boozer family, which now lives in Releigh, N.C., could not be reached Tuesday for an update on Renee Boozer's condition.

Mote and Maryland athletic director Deborah Yow both released letters on Monday apologizing to Duke and Mrs. Boozer. Mote, Yow and Maryland basketball coach Gary Williams also had open letters addressing fan violence posted on the school's Web site on Tuesday. Mote blamed Maryland students for the barrage of water bottles, cups and other debris thrown at the Duke bench, and he said it was not an isolated incident.

"When visitors cannot come to our athletic events without the fear of assault, or actually experiencing assault, something is very wrong," Mote wrote in his open letter to the Maryland campus community.

In Saturday's game, Duke stormed back from a 10-point deficit with one minute left in regulation to win in overtime. After the game, Carlos Boozer Sr. stormed into a room where media members were waiting to talk to Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski and angrily told them that a glass bottle had hit his wife in the head, the Durham Herald-Sun reported. Carlos Boozer Sr. played basketball for the University of Maryland when he was younger.

"What happened Saturday night took a great leap from boosterism to hooliganism that we cannot condone or tolerate," Mote wrote.

Mote called for an immediate review of security at Cole Field House. University police were going through security video tapes from the game to identify the offenders. Yow said extra security measures will be in place at future Maryland home games, starting with the Terrapins' game this Sunday against Clemson.

Carlos Boozer Jr. said his mother had some severe headaches from the incident but was recovering. During a press conference on Tuesday, Krzyzewski said Renee Boozer was still receiving medical care for the incident.

"She was still having some problems yesterday, and I have not heard about her today," said Krzyzewski, who added he no longer takes his own family to Maryland games because of past incidents of thrown debris. "She got hit in the head, temple and in the back. She apparently experienced some headaches and I think she was diagnosed with a mild concussion. She has been receiving medical care to make sure that there is nothing else wrong."

Duke, which is ranked No. 2 in the country, hosts No. 4 North Carolina at 5 p.m. Alaska time on Thursday in a game broadcast nationally on ESPN-2.

Click here to see the letter written by University President Dr. C.D. Mote, Jr., athletic director Deborah A. Yow, anc coach Gary Williams.



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