At the Texas Book Festival Saturday afternoon, journalist Jessica Luther, author of “Unsportsmanlike Conduct: College Football and the Politics of Rape,” joined Texas Monthly reporting partner Dan Solomon joined Rick Gipprich and Rose Luna of the Texas Association Against Sexual Assault to discuss how different institutions—the NCAA, athletic departments, universities, the media—respond to these stories
Luther wants more accountability from coaches, especially in situations where a student-athlete who has had a sexual assault accusation or trial in the past transfers into a new program: “You have to push coaches and ask them, ‘What are you doing for these players, what are teams doing for these players, are they getting counseling?'”
Luna said that one has to be careful when discussing the role of alcohol in campus sexual assaults, noting that it can often lead to “blaming victims and excusing perpetrators.”
All four emphasized that the importance of knowing your rights. “There is a list of resources out there,” Luther said, and urged students, activitsts and faculty to check out the website Know Your IX.
Luther urged preventative education as a means of combating sexual assault and singled out a general lack of understanding about consent. “I would start teaching about it from kindergarten on,” she said.
Solomon noted that locker room culture can improve when leadership at the coach level improves, when “there are better men in those roles and in those jobs.”