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Oregon Basketball Star Allowed to Play During Sexual Assault Investigation

June 27, 2017

A former University of Oregon men’s basketball player was allowed to play this year while under investigation for sexual assault.

Kavell Bigby-Williams, who recently announced his intention to transfer to and play for Louisiana State University, but who has not yet signed with the institution, is under investigation for an assault near Gillette College, a Wyoming community college.

The case is open but inactive, the Register-Guard reported.

Following news reports, Oregon released a statement saying it was impossible to publicly disclose information about a possible sexual assault because of federal student privacy laws.

Police from the community college’s campus contacted University of Oregon law enforcement in fall 2016 asking for help to interview Bigby-Williams, according to the statement. Through his attorney, Bigby-Williams wouldn't comply, the statement says.

The allegations against him were not shared with the Oregon coaching staff.

“University processes, then as now, involve communication between campus police, the Title IX office and athletics administration to determine whether there is a risk to the campus community that requires immediate action. In September 2016, there was insufficient information to warrant interim action,” the statement reads.

The Daily Emerald, the student newspaper, first reported the story.

Per the Emerald report, Oregon’s president, Michael Schill, was ignorant of the accusations.

“I don’t have any awareness of that,” Schill told a Daily Emerald reporter. “In any event, I can’t comment on an individual student. What if I was asked by another reporter about you being obnoxious? Would you want me to tell them that?”

Schill told the Register-Guard it’s protocol for the president, athletic director and coaches to not be notified.

Experts say that institutions are under no obligation to inquire about or track athletes’ sexual assault offenses through the judicial system.

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Jeremy Bauer-Wolf

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