NCAA president Mark Emmert believes it’s the responsibility of individual schools to handle issues of domestic violence and sexual assault, and that a spate of recent cases reflect greater societal problems.
“If a student-athlete engages in bad behavior, they have to be subject to the same standards of conduct as everyone else,” Emmert told reporters Tuesday before delivering a lecture at Kansas City’s Rockhurst University about the future of college sports.
“The most important thing to the NCAA membership,” Emmert said, “has always been that students aren’t treated in any privileged or disproportionate fashion.”
That doesn’t mean that such issues haven’t been brought to Emmert’s attention.
The NCAA announced a partnership last week with the White House on a new campaign called “It’s On Us,” which is designed to get young men and women to take responsibility for themselves and their behavior. The NCAA also released a new handbook last month to universities and athletic departments that shares best practices for handling domestic violence and sexual abuse.
Those issues have been in the spotlight recently in the NFL, where a series of high-profile abuse cases involving stars such as Ravens running back Ray Rice and Vikings running back Adrian Peterson have led to widespread change in the way the league handles domestic violence cases.
Similar cases have occurred on college campuses, generating far less attention.
This article was republished with permission from the author, Nick Ehli. The original article was published in the Bozeman Daily Chronicle.