Baylor football coach Art Briles said Tuesday that players have been given awareness training in the wake of recent sexual-assault allegations or convictions involving former Bears players.
“I’m always concerned any time when anything of that nature transpires,” Briles said during a Big 12 coaches teleconference. “It’s been a process to where we’re really doing all we can do to make sure all of our guys are at the awareness level they need to be at by giving them proper training with professionals in those fields to help them know how to handle themselves at all times. I hope, like everybody else across America’s doing. It’s a situation where it’s a concern and it’s something we are dealing with on a daily basis.”
Two former players have been convicted of sexual assaults of Baylor female students in the past two years, defensive end Tevin Elliott in 2014 and defensive end Sam Ukwuachu in 2015. Defensive end Shawn Oakman, who completed his eligibility last season and projected to be selected in next week’s NFL Draft, was arrested April 13 by Waco police and accused of sexually assaulting a Baylor female student. According to the police report, Oakman said the sex was consensual.
Briles was named in a federal Title IX lawsuit filed by the victim in the Elliott case, who alleged that school officials did not take action to investigate her claim. In 2014, Elliott was convicted on two counts of sexual assault and sentenced to 20 years in prison.
During spring football drills, Baylor placed a new sign at the entrance of its practice field with the message: “Real Men Respect Women.” Asked about the sign during an April 5 news conference in Waco, Briles said: “I think it’s just an awareness situation that everyone needs to be involved in, across thee nation. Every high school, every home. Everywhere you see. Because as we know, there’s issues all across our society with it. You need to respect women. But not just women, men also. And children … That’s just something that we’re trying to make sure our guys are aware of, what’s the right thing to do at the time.”