Phone records have shown that Tennessee head football coach Butch Jones was in constant contact with his own players, AD Rick Hart and the Knoxville PD after an alleged rape committed by two players last November, according to a report by The Tennessean.
The contact shows that Jones was in touch with the following people on November 16, the day when players A.J. Johnson and Michael Williams allegedly raped a female student-athlete at their off-campus apartment: Knoxville police officer Sam Brown, chief of police David Rauch, player Drae Bowles (who encouraged the alleged victim to alert the authorities) and Bowles’ father Dexter, a sheriff’s captain in Madison County, Tennessee.
Jones also reached out to player Curt Maggitt as well as Johnson.
That said, in terms of Jones’ reaction to the accusation, he appears to have been pretty on top of things despite reports that he yelled at Bowles for “betraying the team” for turning players in, which Jones himself has denied. Looking at the report, it’s actually the Knoxville PD that looks like it dropped the ball the most because the search of the crime scene did not take place until several hours after they spoke to Jones.
And Jones stressed his commitment to the Vols’ reputation as an upstanding program in the midst of a Title IX lawsuit in a statement.
“Anytime we have a disciplinary issue with a player, we have as many conversations as needed with players, parents, law enforcement, whomever until we can be sure that we are making the best decision possible,” Jones said in the statement. “These are decisions that can be life-changing for these individuals. After taking into account all the information we could gather in this case, we made the decision to suspend two student-athletes from the team immediately.”
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*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports