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Release: January 30, 2003

Following are the letter and report issued today by the Board in Control of Athletics to University of Iowa Interim President Willard "Sandy" Boyd.


President Willard Boyd
Office of the President
101 Jessup Hall
Dear President Boyd:

On November 6, 2002, you asked that the Board in Control of Athletics (BICOA) look into the Pierre Pierce case and consider steps that should be taken to insure that similar situations are resolved in the interests of the entire university. Specifically, you instructed BICOA to recommend changes it deems advisable in order to assure that resolutions in the future protect the interests of the university as a whole, including the interests of students.

A committee was formed to represent BICOA in carrying out your charge. The attached report is from that committee and its recommendations are presented for your consideration and approval. The report was presented to BICOA at its meeting of January 30, 2003.

We hope these recommendations prove useful to you and the University. We thank you for the opportunity to serve.

Sincerely,

Nicholas Colangelo, Chair of Committee and Chair of BICOA

(Signing for the Committee)

Elizabeth Altmaier, Faculty Representative to Big Ten/NCAA

Charles Lynch, BICOA, Faculty Representative

Jane Meyer, Senior Associate Athletics Director

Pamela Trimpe, BICOA, Staff Representative

Advisors to the Committee:

Linda McGuire, Special Counsel to the President

Charlotte Westerhaus, Director of Affirmative Action

Phillip Jones, Vice President for Student Affairs*

*Vice President Jones did not participate in any deliberations or in the report due to his status on the Pierce case.

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cc: Members of the Board in Control of Athletics

Bob Bowlsby, Athletics Director

Mark Schantz, Administrative Liaison to Athletics


REPORT TO THE PRESIDENT

The Board in Control of Athletics
January 30, 2003

INTRODUCTION

The committee representing the Board in Control of Athletics (BICOA) was charged by President Willard Boyd on November 6, 2002, to review the Pierre Pierce case and to consider steps that should be taken to ensure that similar situations are resolved in the interests of the entire University. The Committee was instructed to recommend changes, based on its review, that it deems advisable to assure that resolutions in the future protect the interests of the University as a whole, as well as the interests of the students. The majority of the Committee members agreed with the conclusions and recommendations outlined in this report.

The Committee met three times and reviewed documents relevant to the case, including The University of Iowa Student-Athlete Handbook, The Big Ten Conference Handbook, The Policy Manual of the Board in Control of Athletics, the Office of Affirmative Action Policy on Sexual Harassment, and The University of Iowa Policies & Regulations Affecting Students. In addition, committee members interviewed persons who could provide relevant information either to the Pierce case or to procedures regarding student-athletes and misconduct. The following were interviewed:

Steve Alford, Head Coach, Men's Basketball
Bob Bowlsby, Athletics Director
Anne Lahey, Assistant County Attorney and Prosecutor in Pierce Case
Karla Miller, Executive Director, Rape Victim Advocacy Program
Fred Mims, Associate Athletics Director for Student Services
Lon Mueller, Office of the Ombudsperson
Ann Rhodes, Former Administrative Liaison to Athletics
Maile Sagen, Office of the Ombudsperson
Mark Schantz, General Counsel and Administrative Liaison to Athletics
Bonnie Slatton, Former Faculty Representative to Big Ten/NCAA
J. Patrick White, County Attorney and Prosecutor in Pierce Case
Note: Others were interviewed, but stating their names may compromise the identity of the victim.

Based on the written charge from President Boyd and on discussions between the President, Nicholas Colangelo, and Linda McGuire, the Committee understood its charge to be primarily forward-looking, emphasizing recommendations that would permit procedural protection and equity in the future. Also, since this was a BICOA committee, the focus was on athletics issues and procedures.

We respect that the President has charged another University committee to investigate the more specific details of the Pierce case and the roles of University officials. We reviewed the specifics of the Pierce case only to the extent of informing our consideration of proposed changes to Athletics policies and procedures.

Our review indicates that errors in procedures, judgments, and communications were made in the Pierce case. Among them are:

a. The University's involvement in the criminal settlement of the Pierce case did not include a range of University officials who could have provided consultation regarding the broader interests of Athletics, as well as the University.

b. Representatives of Athletics made inappropriate statements while criminal proceedings were in progress.

c. The amount and timeliness of protection and support given to the victim by University officials may have been insufficient.

d. Pierce's status as an athlete appears to have dominated the concerns of some of those involved to the detriment of focusing on the broader interests of the University. It is inconclusive, however, whether he received preferential treatment because of his status as an athlete.

The Pierce case has put The University of Iowa in a negative light within both the University community and the wider community. We believe that the many friends and supporters of the University want clarity and closure in this case and an assurance that procedures are in place to protect students and the University in the future. To that end, we offer these recommendations.

RECOMMENDATIONS
(these are made in no particular order)

1. The Department of Athletics should:

a. Write into the Student-Athlete Handbook (with BICOA) a suspension policy that specifies that 1. the Athletic Director (AD) must suspend a student-athlete from athletic activities when charged with a major crime or serious misconduct (e.g., felony charges and sexual assault charges); 2. the AD may, at his or her discretion, suspend a student-athlete pending final resolution of charges of lesser crimes or misconduct (e.g., misdemeanors) or in cases where criminal charges are not filed but where suspension is deemed the most appropriate institutional response to the actions of a student-athlete; and 3. the AD consult or notify the appropriate persons for each instance.

The suspension would last until the criminal case or misconduct proceeding is completed. The AD would then either lift the interim suspension or institute a penalty. The same people (point a3) should be informed and/or consulted.

b. Expect coaching staffs to enforce team rules with appropriate discipline. For any alleged misconduct beyond team rules, such as violations of University policy, student-athletes are subject to University discipline first and foremost as students and secondarily as athletes. Therefore, the AD (or designee) must report all violations of University policy by student-athletes to the appropriate University office(s) for determination of additional proceedings. For violations of the Code of Student Life, the Office of the Vice President for Student Services should be contacted, and for cases of sexual assault or sexual harassment, the Office of Affirmative Action.

c. Provide all coaches and Department of Athletics personnel with training in how to make appropriate public statements regarding highly sensitive public issues. All comments in such situations should be reviewed by the AD. Also, the AD (or designee) and appropriate personnel should be available as a resource to Athletics personnel regarding public statements.

d. Develop a list of resources for addressing major crimes and misconduct. This should be presented annually in educational programs by trained University staff to student-athletes, coaches, and Athletics staff as part of their continuous training/education.

e. Develop, in conjunction with BICOA, a detailed "crisis or event management plan." Although such a plan would be useful in the event a student-athlete is charged with a serious crime, it would be equally useful in other serious situations (e.g., death or serious injury to a player or coach).

f. Identify a member of the Athletics senior staff as the sexual assault and sexual harassment compliance officer for the Department of Athletics. We recommend that the duties of this officer be similar to such duties as performed by University faculty and staff in other academic and administrative units who serve in this role.

2. The Board in Control of Athletics (BICOA) should reconstitute, as a standing committee, "The Student-Athlete Welfare Committee" to provide direction and advice on all policies regarding crime, misconduct, and the general welfare of student-athletes. The committee should work with Athletics and the University to develop a clear, concise, and uniform code of conduct for student-athletes. We recommend that the Athletics compliance officer for sexual assault and sexual harassment (see #1f above), a representative of the Office of Affirmative Action, and a representative of the Office of the Vice President for Student Services serve as ex-officio members on this committee.

3. We recommend that the Administrative Liaison to the Department of Athletics not be in the Office of the General Counsel due to the inherent dual roles of legal advisor to the President and University and liaison to Athletics. We recommend that the President consult with BICOA and examine other Big Ten institutions and Division I administrative structures in determining where the position should be located, as well as the skills necessary for the person who assumes the position. We consider the position of Administrative Liaison extremely important to the University and strongly recommend that the Administrative Liaison be high in the administrative hierarchy and that he/she have ready access to the President.

Conclusion

We believe that respect for and adherence to procedures protect both students and the wider interests of the University. We recommend that in any future criminal and misconduct cases involving student-athletes, University procedures be followed without exception, including the recommendations adopted from this report.

Committee

Nicholas Colangelo, Chair of Committee and Chair of BICOA
Elizabeth Altmaier, Faculty Representative to Big Ten/NCAA
Charles Lynch, BICOA, Faculty Representative
Jane Meyer, Senior Associate Athletics Director
Pamela Trimpe, BICOA, Staff Representative

Advisors to the Committee

Linda McGuire, Special Counsel to the President
Charlotte Westerhaus, Director of Affirmative Action
Phillip Jones, Vice President for Student Affairs*

*Vice President Jones did not participate in any deliberations or in the report due to his status on the Pierce case.