Utah State University To Terminate Blake Anderson for His Derogatory Comments About Sexual Assault Victims

Utah University plans to fire Coach Blake Anderson for violating policy, as per the press release. Blake made statements about sexual assault victims, which a former team player videotaped.

Published on Jul 03, 2024  |  03:58 PM IST |  32.7K
Blake Anderson's Instagram
Blake Anderson

Trigger Warning: This article includes references to sexual abuse

Utah State is planning to remove Coach Blake Anderson. According to the school, Anderson had been placed on administrative leave to terminate.

Utah State University proposes to dismiss Blake Anderson's current job as head football coach. According to a press release, this discharge follows activities taken in the spring of 2023 that violated USU policy and his employment agreement.

Action against Blake Anderson is taken following the violation of policy

According to the press release, "This decision follows an extensive external review of claims of noncompliance with Title IX-implementing university policies, which forbid staff members from looking into allegations of sexual misconduct and demand that all disclosures of such misconduct—including domestic abuse—be reported fully and promptly."

Utah State added, "The University will not provide any additional material until all time for response and/or appeal has elapsed, which is at least 14 days."

Additionally, Utah State announced that Austin Albrecht, the football director of player development and community, and Jerry Bovee, the associate vice president and deputy athletic director of external affairs, had been fired for failing to fulfill their professional obligations and for breaking university policies about the reporting of sexual and domestic abuse.

Nate Dreiling, Utah State's former defensive coordinator and defensive ends coach, will be the interim coach for the 2017 season. The athletic director, Diana Sabau, informed the athletes and staff of the relocation on Tuesday.

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Why Blake Anderson is getting fired

The case began in 2021 when Blake Anderson made derogatory remarks about sexual assault victims during a team meeting that was filmed by a former player, Patrick Maddox.

Maddox filed a complaint against Anderson and Utah State, claiming that Anderson retaliated against him after Maddox filmed Anderson making insulting remarks about sexual assault victims during a team meeting. Anderson stated in the recording, "It has never been more glamorized to be a victim."

In a complaint, Maddox claimed that Anderson threatened him with apologizing to the team for recording Anderson's words. Anderson also warned Maddox that if he did not apologize to the team, teammates would "try to get answers out of him" by any means necessary.

The lawsuit was dismissed after a settlement. However, Maddox apologized during a later team meeting. Anderson also issued an official apology in December 2021 for his comments about sexual assault victims.

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Blake Anderson’s tenure with Utah University

Anderson was set to return for his fourth season with the Aggies after being appointed to replace Gary Andersen at Utah State in 2021. He has an overall record of 74–54 (.578).

Blake joined Utah State after going 51-37 at Arkansas State from 2014 to 2020. He took a leave of absence ahead of the 2019 season, just as his wife, Wendy Anderson, passed away after a two-year battle with breast cancer. He returned for the season's second game, helping Arkansas State finish 8-5.

Anderson led Utah State to three bowl invitations with a 23-17 record at Logan, including one Mountain West Conference championship in 2021. The Aggies' lone football championship since entering the Mountain West Conference in 2013 came from his victory in 2021.

Disclaimer: If you need support or know someone who is struggling with sexual assault or abuse, please reach out to your nearest mental health specialist, NGO or speak to someone about it. There are several helplines available for the same.

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