College Athletes are 3 times more likely to be named as an accuser in Title IX Complaints! This may not be all too surprising given the countless number of high-profile cases of sexual misconduct that have surfaced involving very prominent student-athletes. Nonetheless, this information should compel you to ensure that the adjudication process is as fair as it could possibly be.
Title IX is a federal law that bans gender discrimination in federally funded college and university campuses. Upon its enactment in 1972, the law was utilized to address ongoing complaints of inequality in intercollegiate sports, but in recent years this law is brought up in circumstances involving a more pervasive form of gender discrimination: sexual misconduct.
The “respondent” is a party in this matter who has been accused of sexual misconduct. The stigma that is attached to the role of a respondent in these cases is incredibly damaging within itself. However, being a student-athlete presents another layer of complexity to an already uphill battle for respondents in this process. To successfully navigate your school’s guidelines and to achieve a fair outcome, you absolutely need the help of an attorney-advisor. Here are some reasons why:
You Might Be Suspended Pending The Investigation
After you’ve been accused of sexual misconduct, your school will conduct a fact-finding investigation. Throughout the course of this investigation, a series of interim measures may be imposed until a determination is made. Of the most detrimental interim measures for student-athletes is suspension from the team.
In the absence of specific uniform protocol and guidelines regarding who imposes interim measures, outside parties like athletic directors and coaches have the liberty to make decisions that will affect your athletic career. In a perfect world, you’d trust that these decisions are made in your best interest, but unfortunately, this isn’t always the case. Many athletes learn the hard way that their ineligibility to play may or may not be rooted in the desire to maintain scandal-free programs.
You Could Lose Your Scholarship
Because of pressure from lobbyists and advocacy groups, The NCAA is cracking down on student-athletes who are found responsible for sexual misconduct. Its Committee to Combat Sexual Violence has made a pledge to become stricter about barring college-athletes who have been found responsible for sexual misconduct from receiving athletic scholarships.
As a former college athlete myself, I had a close family member who experienced a serious miscarriage of justice, one of the reasons I am so passionately invested in campus disciplinary and Title IX issues and false allegations you or your child may face.