Last year after the bungling of FSU’s investigation of Jameis Winston’s rape allegations, the NY Times wrote an exhaustive report on how FSU and the Tallahassee Police Department may have protected student athletes from being charged with crimes they committed.
Today, ESPN’s “Outside The Lines” followed up on that report with their own investigation that shows which top schools have the most athletes committing crimes and how many of those athletes were able to avoid prosecution.
Last fall, to determine how often crimes involving college athletes are prosecuted and what factors influence them, Outside the Lines requested police reports involving all football and men’s basketball players on rosters from 2009 to 2014 from campus and city police departments covering 10 major programs: Auburn, Florida, Florida State, Michigan State, Missouri, Notre Dame, Oklahoma State, Oregon State, Texas A&M and Wisconsin. Some police departments withheld records citing state disclosure laws. (ESPN sued the University of Notre Dame and Michigan State University for not releasing material; both cases are pending on appeal.) And not all information was uniform among jurisdictions.
The Florida Gators had most athletes as crime suspects from 2009-14 with Florida State and Oregon State coming in a close second.
The Gators also had the most repeat offenders while athletes who went to FSU were the least likely to be prosecuted.
This report shouldn’t be shocking to anyone following college sports. Athletes have always been able to get away with almost everything but to see it quantified with stats is pretty astonishing.