Baylor head coach Matt Rhule appears to be making a major effort to rebuild the program’s image.
The new Bears coach spoke about how he’s dealing with the players, and noted he texts them nearly every weekend about respecting women and off-field behavior, according to Paula Lavigne and Mark Schlabach of ESP.
“That’s not because we’re at Baylor,” Rhule said. “That’s because I’m dealing with 18- to 23-year-old kids, and I feel a responsibility just like I would feel for my son.”
Rhule sends the texts every two hours on Thursday and Friday night, starting at 7 p.m. and ending at 3 a.m.
Baylor fired Art Briles last year after an investigation into how the program handled allegations of sexual assault. The school still has six Title IX lawsuits pending from 15 different women.
“I think one thing I’ll say – and I feel very passionately about this – is so often football coaches say, ‘Of course, I’m against rape. I have two young girls.’ To me, it’s not just the fact that I have girls in my life is why I don’t believe in rape,” Rhule said. “When you communicate like that with football players or any young people, they begin, in my mind, to differentiate between women they know and love and women who they don’t know, and then they don’t place any value on them.
“We talk about what it means to be a man, and a major part of that is not just how to treat your mom, but how to treat all women, the way to be respectful to all women, how to look at women, how to speak to women and how to treat women each and every day.”