Board of Regents apologizes to Baylor Nation; Dr. David Garland named interim University President; Ken Starr transitions to role of Chancellor and remains professor at Baylor University Law School; Head Football Coach Art Briles suspended with intent to terminate; Athletic Director Ian McCaw sanctioned and placed on probation; University self-reports to NCAA; Task Force responsible for implementing recommendations formed and operative; Findings of Fact and Recommendations made available
The Findings of Fact link above is the first real substantive report we have from the Pepper Hamilton report, but it was also created by Baylor for dissemination, so keep that in mind. A few of the most important pieces of the Baylor release:
The University's student conduct processes were wholly inadequate to consistently provide a prompt and equitable response under Title IX; Baylor failed to consistently support complainants through the provision of interim measures; and in some cases, the University failed to take action to identify and eliminate a potential hostile environment, prevent its recurrence or address its effects.
Actions by University administrators directly discouraged some complainants from reporting or participating in student conduct processes and in one instance constituted retaliation against a complainant for reporting sexual assault.
In addition to broader University failings, Pepper found specific failings within both the football program and Athletics department leadership, including a failure to identify and respond to a pattern of sexual violence by a football player and to a report of dating violence.
There are significant concerns about the tone and culture within Baylor's football program as it relates to accountability for all forms of student athlete misconduct.
Over the course of their review, Pepper investigated the University's response to reports of a sexual assault involving multiple football players. The football program and Athletics department leadership failed to take appropriate action in response to these reports.
If you're wondering why Briles was fired, look no further than the "specific failings within both the football program and Athletics department leadership." Those failings must be pretty serious, and it sounds like they were, to justify the response.
The release is quite long and definitely worthy of a read. By my count, four named individuals have been disciplined and/or terminated, and several others not named specifically will be disciplined, as well. Importantly, the release concludes:
While no written report has been prepared, the Findings of Fact reflect the thorough briefings provided by Pepper and fully communicates the need for immediate action to remedy past harms, to provide accountability for University administrators and to make significant changes that can no longer wait.
We'll keep you updated as things move forward.