WACO (CBSSPORTS.COM) – Two Baylor football players have been suspended from the team stemming from allegations of sexual assault, coach Matt Rhule confirmed to KCEN-TV. The suspensions come about a month after stated two unnamed players were being investigated for an alleged incident that took place in November at an off-campus apartment, which also involved female members of the university’s equestrian team.
Rhule did not get into any specific detail about the suspensions or the allegations. However, he did maintain throughout his answer that the processes at Baylor in handling the allegations were done “the right way” — clearly, a major sticking point for the university in the wake of its scandal involving sexual assault and abuse towards women.
“I can’t get into too many of the details on this specific incident. I really don’t know too many of the details on this specific incident,” Rhule said in a video interview with KCEN, “but I do know things have been handled the right way. And I do know that we’re trying day in and day out to educate all the young men in our program about what you can and cannot do.”
Per ESPN’s Outside the Lines, “two female Baylor students told police they were sexually assaulted at University Parks Apartments in Waco during the early-morning hours of Nov. 12, hours after the Bears lost to Texas Tech 38-24 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.” The two women then reported the incident to Baylor police on Nov. 17, per the report.
As of yet, no charges have been filed and the case has not been brought before a grand jury. University president Linda Livingstone released the following statement on Tuesday evening:
“Baylor University takes any allegation of sexual assault seriously. The University’s new leadership team is unwavering in our commitment to follow our well-documented Title IX policy and procedures in regards to reporting and responding to incidents of sexual assault. The responsibility of responding to alleged incidents of sexual violence does not rest solely in the hands of any specific individual or unit. It is a University response dictated by our Title IX policy. Baylor University remains committed to providing for the safety and security of our campus community.”
In 2017, Baylor announced it had fully implemented 105 recommendations made by the law firm of Pepper Hamilton, who investigated the numerous assault allegations. The university had come under widespread criticism for the way it handled past allegations. The scandal eventually cost the jobs in some form or fashion of coach Art Briles, president Ken Starr and athletic director Ian McCaw.
Rhule was hired to lead Baylor’s football team after Baylor asked former Wake Forest coach Jim Grobe to serve on a temporary basis in 2016. The Bears went 1-11 in Rhule’s first season.