Baylor paid Art Briles $15M after firing him amid scandal
WACO, Texas (AP) — Baylor University paid former football coach Art Briles more than $15 million after firing him in 2016 in the wake of a sexual assault scandal that included allegations against former players and rocked his program, according to newly released tax documents.
Baylor also gave former university President Ken Starr more than $4.5 million after he resigned that same year. His departure followed a scathing report that found that the nation’s largest Baptist university did little to respond to sexual assault accusations involving members of its vaunted football program.
The dollar figures surfaced in annual required tax filings to the IRS and were reported by The Dallas Morning News and Waco Tribune-Herald.
The settlement figures had not previously been disclosed.
Former Baylor athletic director Ian McCaw also received $761,059 upon his resignation. McCaw is now the athletic director at Liberty University.
Briles, 61, was fired after an investigation by a law firm found that over several years the school mishandled numerous sexual assault allegations, including some against football players. The Pepper Hamilton review also led to the departures of Starr and McCaw.
Briles has acknowledged making mistakes and apologized for some “bad things that went on under my watch.” He has also pushed back against some accusations made against him and his program in lawsuits and made clear he wanted to return to coaching. Last fall, a Canadian Football League team announced it had hired Briles as an assistant coach, but backtracked less than 12 hours later in the face of public pressure.
Baylor has settled federal Title IX lawsuits against the school related to the sexual assault scandal and previously settled with three women who hadn’t sued.
In a statement Friday, Baylor said it “stands by the unprecedented corrective actions the Board of Regents made in May of 2016, which included leadership changes within the university administration and athletic department and the acceptance of 105 recommendations to improve our processes, communication, training and response related to incidents of sexual violence within our campus community.”
Information from: The Dallas Morning News, http://www.dallasnews.com