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The Student News Site of California State University, Stanislaus

Signal

The Student News Site of California State University, Stanislaus

Signal

Protestors Rally In Support of Women’s Basketball Team Outside Stan State’s Athletic Awards

Coach+Strickland+walking+through+Stan+States+basketball+court+during+a+Warrior+game.+%28Signal+Photo%2FBrian+Miske%29

Coach Strickland walking through Stan State’s basketball court during a Warrior game. (Signal Photo/Brian Miske)

Protesters rallied in support of the women’s basketball team holding signs, posters, and QR codes at the 2024 Athletic Awards Banquet at California State University Stanislaus

Wayman Strickland, the head coach for Stan State’s women’s basketball, was in attendance despite the allegations against him that include counts of mental abuse, toxic program environment, numerous NCAA violations, and sexual harrassment.  

Complaints were filed by the female basketball players, who contacted University Administrators back in November 2023 to help resolve the matter. Numerous complaints feature sensitive allegations of sexual misconduct, physical harassment, and misuse of program allocated money.     

Dr. Clarissa Lonn, Associate Dean of Students, discussed how Title IX investigations normally proceed. 

“I think it’s a multilayered effect and so I think the hard part is when you’re not in the process, because students have to process through it. And they can choose whether they want to engage or not, it’s not a forced component,” she said.

While any student experiences moments of challenge on their path to their academic goals they can access discrimination, harassment, misconduct or violence-based gender Title IX Rights and Coordinator information found on the University’s web page.  
Paul Norris, is the Title IX Coordinator listed on Stan State’s site who serves as the primary contact for all members of the Stanislaus State community, including students, faculty, staff, third parties, and visitors. 

However, the link directs users to Erica Moorer Taylor as Norris, the listed Title IX Coordinator is currently on leave. 

Erica Moorer Taylor was contacted this week, but the call was redirected to Julie Keo, Deputy Title IX/DHR Coordinator, advising Erica Moorer Taylor was on leave and Keo could assist with any complaints. 

Lonn elaborated on students’ rights in the Title IX process to make decisions about their level of involvement in the investigation and their ability to retain their privacy.

“Every student sometimes in a group situation can elect to have different levels of engagement or involvement,” Lonn said, “In general, with policies, with reporting things, with what their statement is, with what they choose to do.”

Protestors cheered for the athletes as they steadily entered the event where smiles, snapshots, and words of encouragement were exchanged. 

Alyssa Villa (junior, Creative Media) participated in the protest.

“I heard firsthand from some of the basketball players how things were going, and it just didn’t sit right that they’d been here for a whole year, and they still felt unheard,” she said.

Lonn added that the university very much honors the students right to privacy when filing a complaint.  

Villa believes that sensitive issues like this should have been handled with a lot more proactivity, especially since that’s the environment these players are in day in and day out.  

“They should feel safe in that environment, and they didn’t,” Villa said. 

Coach Strickland remains in his role at Stan State as head coach for the women’s team. 

Concerns that players were cut from the team after reports were made to administrators and that they were humiliated and singled-out are questions that the players and Stan State community are seeking answers for. 

The Signal reached out to President Dr. Susan E. Borrego, Coach Wayman Strickland, and Stan State Athletic Director Aaron Allarie. 

When asked if protestors were witnessed at the event, Dr. Susan E. Borrego replied.

“Yes, I observed faculty members with signs outside the Women’s Basketball end of season celebration,” she said through email, “Thank you for reaching out for information. To preserve the integrity of the Title IX process, I am unable to comment further currently. Please know that we take allegations and the well-being of our campus community very seriously. At the point I am able to comment, I will do so.” 

Aaron Allarie replied as well.

“Yes, I was made aware of the events outside of the student athlete Awards Banquet. I am not able to comment at this time, to preserve the integrity of the Title IX process, while all the facts are examined,” Allarie said.

The allegations brought to Stan State’s administration’s attention have not been handled in a way the players felt satisfied with. They waited the 2023-2024 school year wondering if anything would be done to support the athletes through their emotional distress. 

One player who chooses to remain anonymous in fear of repercussions said, “Administration does a good job of making us feel like we can go to them for anything but when we do, they don’t do anything.” 

If you have Title IX questions, concerns, or complaints contact Coordinator, Erica Moorer Taylor by email [email protected] or call (209) 667-3868.

NOTE: This article formerly implied that Clarissa Lonn was speaking on the circumstances specific to the Women’s Basketball case. The wording has been changed at the request of CSU Stanislaus’ Strategic Communications & Marketing to reflect that she was talking about the Title IX process in general.

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Protestors Rally In Support of Women’s Basketball Team Outside Stan State’s Athletic Awards