Reform group: BU sexual assault scandal costs $76 million

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WACO, Texas (KWTX) The cost of the sexual assault scandal that engulfed Baylor’s football program amounts to more than $76 million and could rise to more than $200 million, according to an analysis released Tuesday morning by Bears for Leadership Reform, which is calling for greater transparency from the school’s regents.

The analysis was released during a news conference Tuesday morning in Waco. (Photo by John Carroll)

Baylor issued a brief statement after the group's news conference Tuesday.

“Beyond confirming Baylor University is and will continue to be strong and financially healthy, we will not respond to such speculation with any further comment,” the statement said.

Bears for Leadership Reform commissioned HSSK, LLC of Austin to estimate expenses and lost revenue stemming from the scandal that led to a leadership shakeup at the school in May.

“It is my estimation that the financial impact of the sexual assault crisis at Baylor could be as much or more than $223 million consisting of $121.7 million in costs and $101.3 million in lost revenues through 2019,” Managing Director Jared Jordan wrote in a summary of the analysis.

The analysis released Tuesday estimates that to date, the school has spent $44.1 million including $5 million in fees to the Pepper Hamilton law firm, another $12 million in ongoing legal, consulting and public relations costs, and $22.5 million in settlements with former employees including a $17 million agreement with ousted head football coach Art Briles.

At the same time the analysis estimates that Baylor has lost $32.6 million to date in private contributions.

The analysis estimates that total costs could rise to $121.7 million and that the total lost in contributions could reach $101.3 million, for a total loss of $223 million.

The figures were reached through a review of financial and accounting information such as audited financial statements, IRS statements and Equity in Athletics Data provided to the U.S. Department of Education.

The analysis also drew on articles and other information published by the media, information related to the child sexual abuse investigation at Penn State University, information related to settlements with sexual assault victims at other institutions, and information provided by individuals associated with the reform group.

On May 26, Baylor regents reassigned President and Chancellor Ken Starr, fired head football coach Art Briles and put Athletic Director Ian McCaw on probation in the wake of the scathing report of a review of the sexual assault scandal that engulfed the school’s football program.

Briles and Starr later reached the settlements with the school and McCaw remained on the Baylor payroll until Liberty University announced that it had hired him as athletic director.