Baylor Reportedly Not Expecting 'Death Penalty' After NCAA Investigation Ends

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistJune 13, 2018

FILE - In this Dec. 5, 2015 file photo, Baylor helmets on shown the field after an NCAA college football game in Waco, Texas. The Education Department's civil rights chief says she's sorry for making
LM Otero/Associated Press

Baylor University is reportedly expecting to avoid severe punishment from the NCAA after the governing body of college athletics completes its investigation into the school's sexual-assault scandal.

On Wednesday, Mac Engel of the Star-Telegram reported Baylor officials are expecting the interview process to finish this year with a final resolution in the case by spring of 2019.

"If people are expecting some sort of 'Death Penalty,' I think they are going to be disappointed," a Baylor athletic official told Engel.

In May 2016, Baylor announced widespread leadership changes after reviewing an independent probe by the Law Firm of Pepper Hamilton, which concluded the “student conduct processes were wholly inadequate to consistently provide a prompt and equitable response under Title IX.”

School president Ken Starr, head coach Art Briles and athletic director Ian McCaw all ended up leaving in the wake of the scandal. Starr was removed as president and later stepped down as a professor; Briles had his contract terminated; McCaw resigned and later accepted the AD position at Liberty University.

"We were horrified by the extent of these acts of sexual violence on our campus," Board of Regents chair Richard Willis said. "This investigation revealed the university's mishandling of reports in what should have been a supportive, responsive and caring environment for students. The depth to which these acts occurred shocked and outraged us."

The question for Baylor is whether the NCAA is able to identify whether any specific violations occurred and their severity, per Engel. He noted it's possible the football program won't face any penalty if it's determined the sexual-assault scandal was a "university issue."

Although the NCAA investigation was confirmed by Baylor in June 2017, the organization hasn't publicly commented on it.

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