The honor code at BYU is something that is held in high regard by the university and its community. It is also something that will no longer be addressed with the media when a player commits a violation of the honor code. BYU athletics director Tom Holmoe says the university will no longer issue any comments about honor code violations committed by student athletes.
“It’s led to the point that, as of January 1, when we receive inquiries from the media about honor code issues, we no longer will address them from a campus perspective,” Holmoe said in a Dessert News report. “There won’t be a campus spokesperson that addresses any honor code issues anymore. There are two exceptions to that. One, if there is something that is in public record. If that shows an honor code violation has occurred, then our spokesperson could talk about that. Or if one of our student-athletes chooses to come public, then we would. But we won’t discuss that anymore. So don’t ask.”
While some may question the integrity of the university by not disclosing such information, it is worth commending the decision as it actually helps to protect the privacy of the student-athletes at BYU. A player can still discuss a violation if they choose, and if they do the university may address it when needed, but that leaves the choice to disclose information up to the student-athlete. For a school that takes the honor code as seriously as BYU, that is fair to the player and cuts down on any potential distraction that could come through the media.
Those distractions have been experienced by BYU in recent years and helped lead to the new direction when it comes to media relations. When an honor code violation comes up, so does debate over the honor code itself by those outside of BYU. Keeping the public statement scaled back to a simple violation of team rules should help eliminate some of that potential mess and public relations nightmare.
Leaving it as a standard violation of team rules is good enough anyway.