Complaint claims Nebraska failed to appropriately address the player-assistant coach’s sexual connection

Nebraska failed to appropriately address the player-assistant coach's sexual connection | Image Credit: Apnews.com
Nebraska failed to appropriately address the player-assistant coach’s sexual connection | Image Credit: Apnews.com

OMAHA, Nebraska – A former player for the Nebraska women’s basketball team claims that after her sexual connection with an assistant coach became public, coach Amy Williams and athletic director Trev Alberts did not behave appropriately.

Ashley Scoggin filed a civil case in U.S. District Court, alleging that Chuck Love developed a romantic interest in her, became sexually involved, and threatened to take her down if she didn’t comply.

Along with Williams and Alberts, the complaint was filed on Sunday and names Love and the university’s Board of Regents as defendants. Scoggin is requesting an undefined amount of damages and a jury trial in Lincoln for the purported infringement of her civil rights.

Nebraska’s response to player-assistant coach’s sexual relationship was inadequate, lawsuit says | Image Credit: APnews.com
Nebraska’s response to player-assistant coach’s sexual relationship was inadequate, lawsuit says | Image Credit: APnews.com

Attorney Maren Chaloupka of Scoggin stated on Monday that “it’s a really distressing and serious matter of predatory coaches that pursue sexual connections with student-athletes.” “There is a significant power disparity between student-athletes and professional coaches. In 2022, this was a widely recognized fact.

“There is a significant onus on the institution and the coaches to prevent this from occurring and, god forbid it does happen, to treat it right. Division I colleges who operate at the highest level are certainly aware of the harm that comes from this type of a predatory environment.”

According to university spokeswoman Melissa Lee, the case was brought to the school’s attention on Monday.

Lee released a statement saying, “The University does not agree with the claims included in the lawsuit and plans to strongly defend this case, even though it does not comment on the facts of pending litigation.”

Williams opted not to respond. When The Associated Press texted and emailed Alberts and Love for comment, they did not reply.

Scoggin was a Cornhuskers player for two seasons. In February 2022, she was fired from the team on the same day that Love was placed on paid leave. After three months, Love quit. Now, Scoggin performs at UNLV.

The lawsuit claims that Williams and Alberts failed to implement policies, training, or rules that forbade employees from engaging in sexual relations with athletes. It further claims that the absence of protective measures “was so reckless that misconduct involving sexual misconduct by coaches was inevitable as of September 2021.”

As stated in the lawsuit:

At the summer of 2021, Scoggin interned at the athletic department and indicated her desire to work as a coach in the future. Scoggin accepted Love’s invitation to work at a little table in his office.

Married Love started asking Scoggin intimate things, like what kind of booze she liked, and then he started inviting her to go out for drinks. Scoggin turned down a number of invites before accepting one in the end. A few days later, Love asked her, “Have you ever done anything with a coach before?” as they met late at night in a Costco parking lot. Love then kissed her.

Scoggin felt “perplexed and trapped” after the encounter since “it was now apparent that Love sought a sexual connection.” Love demanded that Scoggin be “ready and willing” for sex whenever he felt like it, even going so far as to call her to his hotel room when the team was playing away from home.

To verify and record Scoggin’s presence in Love’s hotel room on camera, team members and practice players concocted a hoax the evening before a February 2022 game against Penn State. In order to get a duplicate room key, a male practice player pretended to be Love to the desk receptionist. In Love’s room, two teammates approached Scoggin. Williams was shown the footage along with their report on their results.

The complaint claimed that Ashley was “cast by Williams in the character of a seducer and a liar.” “She gave the players hours to taunt and blame Ashley. She refrained from moving the players or offering advice, even though it was possible that her assistant head coach had abused his or her position of authority.

According to the lawsuit, Scoggin was told she was kicked from the team during a meeting with Williams and other administration officials after returning to Lincoln and was not advised of her Title IX rights.

The media broke the news of Love’s suspension and Scoggin’s firing at the same time.
“Rather from being driven to safeguard its student-athlete, Ashley, NU, Williams, and Alberts were motivated to prevent controversy and humiliation to the Cornhuskers women’s basketball team,” the complaint said.

“NU, Williams, and Alberts should have sent a clear message that it is never appropriate for a professional coach to pursue a sexual relationship with a student-athlete. Instead, they allowed the rumours and perception to grow that Ashley was “equally to blame” or had done something else improper.”

Source:
https://apnews.com/article/nebraska-cornhuskers-lawsuit-77a7d3fad3072270bd527dfb074e75f5


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