|Western Michigan had its 2012 CCHA championship banner stolen and the captain wants the banner back (Western Michigan)|
Every day as the Western Michigan University hockey players walked past or into Lawson Arena they could be reminded of their magical run from the 2011-12 postseason in which the Broncos claimed the Central Collegiate Hockey Association playoff title for the first time since 1987 and a berth to the NCAA Tournament. That was until Monday when the banner honoring last year's Broncos squad vanished.
"A vinyl banner commemorating the Broncos' latest CCHA Championship purchased by WMU's Blue Line Club to hang outside of Lawson Ice Arena has come up missing,” said a WMU spokesman in a statement released to CBSSports.com. “Anyone with any information to the whereabouts of the banner should contact assistant director of media relations Adam Bodnar. The Western Michigan hockey program would like the banner returned."
Judging by the reaction of some players on Twitter, they really, really want it back. WMU Captain Luke Witkowski channeled his inner Liam Neeson to send a message to the thieves:
For the person who stole the CCHA banner outside of Lawson Arena:I don't know who you are. I don't know what you want. If you are looking..— Luke Witkowski (@L28witko) October 8, 2012
for ransom, I can tell you I don't have money. But what I do have are a very particular set of skills; skills I have acquired over a very..— Luke Witkowski (@L28witko) October 8, 2012
long career. Skills that make me a nightmare for people like you. If you let our banner go now, that'll be the end of it. I will not look..— Luke Witkowski (@L28witko) October 8, 2012
for you, I will not pursue you. But if you don't, I will look for you, I will find you, and I will bag you.— Luke Witkowski (@L28witko) October 8, 2012
According to a university official, the banner would have been difficult to remove, based on where it was placed on the building.
It should be noted that this is not the official banner for the CCHA championship. That piece of fabric hangs in Joe Louis Arena year-round. However the reminder of a historic season remains special to fans and players alike.
Let's just hope for the personal wellbeing of the offenders, Witkowski and his teammates don't catch up to them before the authorities do.