After an Honor Code investigation was recently completed, BYU announced that six players on the BYU football team were disciplined for Honor Code violations. The investigation comes after rumors of alcohol and sex parties during a heavy recruiting weekend surfaced two months ago. Two of the players were placed on probation, three were suspended from school and one was dismissed from school. Names have not been released because of federal privacy issues.
Shortly after the allegations surfaced, BYU students were obviously angered about the statements – or lack thereof – concerning punishment of the athletes. Students expressed their desire to know if athletes would be held to the same standard as the rest of the student body.
The discipline, some of the harshest punishments against football players in BYU’s history, is an affirmation among BYU students that everyone – athlete or not – should be treated the same. The BYU administration deserves acknowledgement and praise that such appropriate steps have been taken to punish students who don’t follow the Honor Code. Honor Code violations cannot and will not be tolerated, and the university has reaffirmed that. Without divulging into details or names of the players, the administration took a stand and handled the situation in the right way.
Sadly, the allegations and need for discipline has reflected on the whole team and the athletic department. Amid these allegations, we should remember the hundreds of good people on the football team and in other athletic programs. A majority of athletes and staff aren’t the problem, just a small minority of players. Many athletes at BYU have proven themselves to be great leaders, great missionaries and great examples. We should not let a small minority ruin this reputation.
Recruits should come to BYU and receive the best impression of the school and its athletic program. Alcohol and sex parties do not reflect an accurate view of the football program or BYU – BYU is making an effort to ensure this.
“Although the honor code review is complete, the university recognizes that further review regarding important related athletic issues and policies is necessary,” university spokeswoman Carrie Jenkins told The Daily Universe.
On a broader level, recruiting parties have proven to be a problem all over the country. Widespread media attention has focused specifically on The University of Colorado. Structural changes have not only been discussed at the university level, but the national level as well. Incidents across the country have prompted the NCAA to promote new rules and regulations that will re-enforce BYU’s own standards. A ban on university-funded visits are part of the stricter standards discussed.
It is comforting to know that at the national level, efforts have been taken and implemented to be sure scandals that haunted BYU and universities across the nation will, hopefully, never happen again. At BYU, we are glad the administration made such an announcement and hope the strong foundation of the Honor Code will keep other incidents from ever happening again.