North Texas Daily

Baylor football needs to stop ignoring its rape culture

Baylor football needs to stop ignoring its rape culture

April 28
04:11 2016

The Editorial Board

It’s difficult to understand how, as a private Baptist institution, Baylor University could claim to embody Christian ideals and then refuse to live up to them when it is its turn to do so.

Turning to the school’s main website, one would find listed under a section called “Baylor’s Convictions” the university’s commitment to offer “a distinctive voice to global conversations about crucial issue,” listing things such as “social responsibility” and “human rights.”

We call bull.

If there were ever a time for Baylor University to offer its support for a global cause, it would be now. By stonewalling inquiries regarding multiple sexual assault allegations against its football program over the past few years, Baylor has swallowed whole its opportunity to lead a global charge in curbing the way we view, treat and educate our youth about rape. It has given the perpetrators a slap on the wrist and, in no uncertain terms, condoned the behavior.

To understand the situation, one should take a look at the timeline of Baylor’s football program. After finishing in the NCAA College Football Top 25 for the first time in over 20 years, the athletic department is under a lot of pressure to keep the momentum going into seasons beyond. It must live up to the hype surrounding the construction of its new McLane Stadium, as well as continue to be ranked nationally. It needs to retain the superior players it has amassed in recent years, and it can’t do that if the players are convicted and jailed for rape.

So what’s the solution? If you’re Art Briles, you sweep it under the rug, allow the offenders to retain their scholarship and keep playing football, and then sit on it until it happens again. If you’re unsure which case we’re referring to, just Google former defensive end Shawn Oakman’s name.

What gives, and at what point do they put their foot down?

Sure, it’s easy for those in Waco to look at us in Denton, peering down from the ivory towers and say we are calling them out because our football program sucks.

OK, we’ll give you that, last season was an abomination. If you were asked to describe the worst season of football your team has ever endured, it would come up short of our 2015 season.

But you know what? We fired our coach.

We fired our coach because he didn’t live up to the expectations of our athletic department or the student body, much less the university when he didn’t deliver on a promise.

Baylor’s entire institution thrives on the notion of living up to Christian principles, and we feel comfortable in saying Art Briles has most certainly fallen short in being a leader to Baylor’s students, whether they play for him or not.

North Texas is waiting to see if new coach Seth Littrell’s spread offense will amount to anything this fall – Baylor is just hoping to make it that long without a new rape accusation coming to light.

We’ll take our position over theirs any day.

Featured Image: Samuel Wiggins | Senior Staff Illustrator

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2 Comments

  1. UNT Football Fan
    UNT Football Fan April 28, 11:35

    This is the biggest load of hypotheticals and assumptions I have ever seen in an article written by a bunch of students who don’t know what they are talking about and are no where close to the situation. The NT Daily should be ashamed for themselves, not because they are saying “no” to rape, but instead making this a guilty until proven innocent situation when it should be the other way around. As young journalists, don’t start saying information and spewing it on your website when all you have is a bias towards the school and only the facts you received from the ACTUAL media. Instead of pointing fingers and placing blame without any original facts to back it up, and publishing an article that has nothing to do with the mission of this paper, maybe you guys should stick to what you know and not try to have a “hot take” to gain viewers. No one wants to read your paper. Thank you, I’m assuming this comment will be deleted and hope it does because then I will tell everyone how the NT Daily can’t take any criticism and loves to censor their comment board.

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