In a move it's calling as a nationwide first, the University of Texas at San Antonio said it will ban students with confirmed histories of violence or sexual abuse
from playing in its athletic programs.
Those who have been convicted of or pleaded guilty to crimes involving violence and sexual abuse will be barred from participating in sports programs and receiving sports scholarships, officials said. The rule also applies to those found guilty of such crimes as juveniles.
The university's move comes after months of student criticism
over how officials have handled sexual assault accusations on campus. Student protestors have decried what they call a "rape culture" at the school.
The new policy is known as the Tracy Rule, after Brenda Tracy, who in the late '90s reported being raped by a group of men that included Oregon State University football players. Tracy visited UTSA several times to discuss assault prevention with groups including athletics personnel and student athletes.
“Sexual assault and misconduct are never, ever acceptable,” UTSA Vice President Lisa Campos said in a written statement. “By implementing the UTSA Tracy Rule, we are letting current and prospective student-athletes know that UTSA is a community where conduct off the field is just as important as conduct on the field.”
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