As Indiana Gov. Mike Pence is poised to sign into law, various organizations from GenCon to the Disciples of Christ are threatening to withdraw their conventions from the state if the bill becomes law.
While other big-time sporting events are set to take place in Indianapolis over the next two years, maybe none carry more heft than the NFL's Scouting Combine. The Combine is currently set for Indianapolis next February.
If the bill becomes law, the NFL should move the Combine out of Indianapolis effective next year.
NFL spokesman Greg Aiello told Outsports the league had no comment at this time on the matter. It's understandable if the NFL hasn't given the issue much thought, given the bulk of the firestorm over the law hit during the NFL Annual Meeting in Phoenix as various issues from rules changes to concussions to moving franchises to Los Angeles were discussed.
The league previously considered moving the Super Bowl from Arizona when that state was poised to enact a similar law. The Arizona Cardinals vocally opposed the law. Aiello said on behalf of the NFL at the time:
"Our policies emphasize tolerance and inclusiveness, and prohibit discrimination based on age, gender, race, religion, sexual orientation, or any other improper standard. We are following the issue in Arizona and will continue to do so should the bill be signed into law, but will decline further comment at this time."
Next month the NFL will host its annual Rookie Draft in Chicago after many years of it being in New York. So there is precedent for the league shifting its annual events to other cities. Hopefully they will follow suit with the Combine.
It would be a very smart move for the NFL, if it is dedicated to inclusion of gay athletes (which I believe the front office is). Can you imagine a gay rookie or reporter being denied service at a restaurant at the Combine? Public relations disaster.