WACO, Texas (AP) — Former Baylor coach Art Briles tells a Waco television station that the school-commissioned report on its handling of sexual assault allegations has not been shared with him and that he assumes it supports a conclusion already drawn by the board of regents.
KWTX-TV posted the statement on its website Thursday. It is the first time Briles has spoken out since being ousted by the board last week after eight years as the Bears’ coach.
The report by the Philadelphia law firm Pepper Hamilton that stated school leadership, including football coaches and staff, inappropriately handled allegations of sexual violence made by students, some against football players. Two players have been convicted of rape.
Briles says his “heart goes out to the victims for the pain that they endured.” He added, “I have certainly made mistakes, and, in hindsight, I would have done certain things differently.
“Keep in mind, the complete scope of what happened here has not been disclosed and unfortunately at this time I am contractually obligated to remain silent on the matter,” he told KWTX-TV. “The report … has not been shared with me directly, despite my full cooperation with the investigation. I can only assume that the report, which is not independent, supports the conclusions that the Board has already drawn. I hope to share with you what I was aware of as soon as I can so Baylor Nation can begin the healing process.”
Since the report was released, university president Kenneth Starr was demoted to chancellor, a position which he then left, and athletic director Ian McCaw also resigned.
The school’s main alumni group, the Baylor Line Association, demanded Thursday that Baylor release a complete report, calling the 13-page summary released last week as unsatisfactory.
School regents have said they will protect victim privacy, but alumni group insisted details can be released while protecting privacy.
“The Baylor Family deserves an unvarnished, complete accounting of the facts about how these events were handled,” the alumni group said. “Releasing a detailed factual report is important to assure the Baylor Family that the right people have been held accountable and that those in power are not using misguided notions of confidentiality to shield their own actions.”
The board of regents didn’t immediately respond to request for comment Thursday on both Briles’ statement and the alumni demands.
Earlier this week, Baylor hired former Wake Forest coach Jim Grobe to replace Briles.
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