A tactic of providing resources and encouragement to change expectations within individual athletic departments will more effectively foster this change of culture, where a mandate is more likely to evoke backlash.” The problem may be serious, but it’s certainly not new.The idea to create guidelines, though, arose after Nelson spoke about the issue at last year’s NCAA Equity and Inclusion Forum – which, as it happens, is underway again this week.“The public understands that children can be manipulated into ‘agreeing’ to behaviors that are inappropriate and even criminal because they are, relative to adults, powerless,” the document reads.“Whether the student-athlete is 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, or older, she or he is significantly less powerful than a head coach, assistant coach, athletics trainer, sport psychologist, athletics director, or other athletics department staff with supervisory control or authority over student-athletes.” The report states that inappropriate sexual relationships between coaches and players happen with some regularity, sometimes with tragic results."Honestly, this was a response to the general issue more than any one notorious or particular case," she said."In general, it's just good to have policies so that people know what to do when things arise." Erin Buzuvis, a law professor at Western New England University, applauded the NCAA on taking a position on the issue.One in five women and one in 16 men will be sexually assaulted while in college, and 90 percent of those victims do not report their assault.The reported this news with the headline, "A shocking number of college men surveyed admit coercing a partner into sex." But as nearly 5,000 people on Twitter have pointed out through the strength of their retweets, this sad news isn't shocking at all.
One comprehensive study estimated the rate of sexual abuse in sport as between 2 and 22 percent.
Of course, not every college guy wants to force or trick a girl into having sex, and not every athlete is a predator.
But these stats do show alarming rates of not only sexual assault and rape, but also the culture that perpetuates it.
The NCAA is asking colleges -- but not ordering them -- to explicitly prohibit romantic relationships between athletes and coaches or other athletic department staff. “Sexual relationships between coaches and student-athletes have become a serious problem,” declares the opening line of a new publication the National Collegiate Athletic Association is distributing to all its member institutions, urging athletic departments to create policies that “unambiguously and effectively” prohibit such relationships.
Of course, these relationships create conflicts of interest.