EAST LANSING (WWJ/AP) – Michigan State University and officials in East Lansing are rolling out a campaign that encourages students to keep NCAA tournament celebrating under control.
Officials posted a list of safety recommendations online, including posters with headlines “Don’t Get Burned,” “Spartans Celebrate With Class” and “No One Is Anonymous.”
The need-to-know messages for how to celebrate safely warn students that “taking part in destructive gatherings and burning furniture are not Spartan traditions… These types of events are an embarrassment to our community and our university. Don’t allow your degree to be devalued.”
The school also spells out legal consequences for participating in unruly celebrations, which include a possible 90 day jail sentence for being caught within 300 feet of an open fire. Students could also be expelled from school.
The warnings come after a rowdy celebration of Michigan State’s victory over Ohio State in the Big Ten football championship game in December resulted in 27 arrests. Police said at least 57 fires were set — many involving couches.
The Spartans play Virginia in a regional semifinal Friday night in New York.
In-state rival Michigan plays Tennessee that night in Indianapolis. Celebrations in Ann Arbor typically have been more subdued.
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