Big 12 Conference Withholds Funds From Baylor U. Over Title IX Scandal

The Big 12 Conference will withhold 25 percent of future revenue distributions from Baylor University “until the proper execution of controls” over its scandal-plagued athletics program “is independently verified.”

“The proportional withholding of revenue distribution payments will be in effect until the board has determined that Baylor is in compliance with conference bylaws and regulations as well as all components of Title IX,” David L. Boren, president of the University of Oklahoma and chairman of the conference’s Board of Directors, announced on the Big 12 website after the board voted unanimously in favor of the withholding policy.

Baylor’s president, Kenneth W. Starr, and its head football coach, Art Briles, were removed last May, and its athletics director, Ian McCaw, was put on probation after an investigation found that university administrators had failed to comply with the gender-equity law known as Title IX and the athletic department had failed to respond properly to the sexual violence of multiple football players.

The changes in leadership were accompanied by other new policies to improve the university’s response to sexual violence and to enhance oversight of the athletics department.

David E. Garland, Baylor’s interim president, said in a written statement that the university already had plans to hire an outside auditor to examine the results of the new practices, and welcomed the conference’s move.

“While the withholding of conference distributions is an unexpected financial event, we do not deem these actions to materially impact the overall financial position of the university. We pledge our full cooperation, and we will work with the Big 12 Conference to conduct the audit as expeditiously as possible,” he said.

This week the troubles in the university’s athletics department continued when a newly hired strength coach for the football team was fired after he was arrested on a charge of soliciting prostitution, the Waco Tribune-Herald reported.

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