Clean haircut and all, there are still a lot of people who don’t see it for Mike Vick. Over 100,000 people have participated in at least two change.org petitions, opposing the induction of the controversial quarterback into Virginia Tech’s hall of fame.
“The College unequivocally opposes honoring an individual whose past actions contradict our values and the cornerstone of our mission,” read one petition. “Over the course of several days, I have communicated with President [Timothy] Sands and other campus administrators to express our disappointment and opposition to this decision. I continue to be in conversations with the president regarding this issue.”
Vick is one of five inductees chosen for the ceremony scheduled on September 22. The school has defended their decision to honor him.
“Mr. Vick’s induction into the university’s sports Hall of Fame acknowledges his tremendous achievements as a student athlete — who some will say was the greatest in the history of the university,” Virginia Tech said in a statement. “We understand that there are those who do not and will never agree with this decision. In considering Mr. Vick’s nomination to our sports Hall of Fame, the criminal activities in which he engaged, his subsequent conviction and time he served for his crime were also considered, and it was informed by the remorse he has shown since that conviction, the work he is currently engaged in to advance animal welfare issues, as well as his efforts to help our current student athletes, based on lessons he’s learned in his own life, make positive choices as they begin their adult lives. This in no way condones the actions for which he was convicted. The university remains dedicated to the protection of animal health and welfare and embodies great care and compassion for all living animals.”
Vick attended Virginia Tech from 1999 until he was drafted by the Atlanta Falcons in 2001. Vick’s jersey was retired by the school in 2002.