And now we know a little bit more of the rest of what could potentially be a very disturbing story.
Following last Saturday’s win over Arkansas State, head coach Gus Malzahn confirmed that tight end Landon Rice had left his football program. Malzahn used “personal reasons” as the impetus for the former four-star recruit’s departure.
Friday night, however, the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer reported that Rice has been accused of first-degree rape. A 19-year-old female filed a police report July 27 accusing Rice of raping her April 12 at an on-campus residence hall and sought a protective order against him Sept. 12, with a temporary order issued three days later.
The alleged victim’s reasoning behind seeking the protective order is eyebrow-raising, to say the least. From the Ledger-Enquirer:
The plaintiff filing the petition with the court makes the same allegation of sexual assault, and seeks a protection order from abuse in fear of “retaliation from a Title IX investigation.”
Title IX is a comprehensive federal law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in any federally funded education program or activity. This includes incidents of sexual harassment, gender-based discrimination and sexual violence.
The law requires schools to take immediate steps to address any sex discrimination, sexual harassment or sexual violence on campus to prevent it from affecting students further.
“Any questions regarding law enforcement matters should be directed to law enforcement authorities,” an AU spokesperson told the paper in a statement. “In addition, by matter of policy and practice, we wouldn’t discuss any issue regarding the privacy of students.”
As of this posting, Rice has not been arrested or formally charged in connection to the alleged rape.
Rice was an early enrollee who participated in spring practice earlier this year. His brother, Logan Rice, plays wide receiver for the Tigers.