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Jayhawks' Athletics Problems | College Sports' Sexual Assault Culture

In this Sept. 13, 2019, file photo, Kansas coach Les Miles stands with his team during a timeout in the second half of an NCAA college football game against Boston College in Boston.
Michael Dwyer/AP
Kansas football coach Les Miles (above) is the latest in a line of coaches costing the University of Kansas millions to buy out their contracts.

A look at the most recent firings and investigations at the University of Kansas Athletics Department, and the culture of sexual assault in college sports programs.

Segment 1, beginning at 1:00: The athletics department at the University of Kansas is becoming better known for firing its coaches and directors than for winning games.

A string of firings and investigations since 2005 have cost the university millions. Les Miles' recent departure as head coach of the football team followed by the firingof Athletic Director Jeff Long who hired him leaves some wondering what's the matter with Jayhawks' sports.

Segment 2, beginning at 26:30: The culture of sexual harassment and assault has been a problem in college athletics for decades.

Sexual assault involving university sports figures has been making news for years yet the institutions and the NCAA have failed in addressing the systemic culture that underscores it. One expert says the environment and a lack of accountability are partly to blame.

  • Jessica Luther, author of "Unsportsmanlike Conduct: College Football and the Politics of Rape" & co-author of "Loving Sports When They Don’t Love You Back"
When I host Up To Date each morning at 9, my aim is to engage the community in conversations about the Kansas City area’s challenges, hopes and opportunities. I try to ask the questions that listeners want answered about the day’s most pressing issues and provide a place for residents to engage directly with newsmakers. Reach me at steve@kcur.org or on Twitter @stevekraske.
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Whether it’s something happening right now or something that happened 100 years ago, some stories don’t fit in the short few minutes of a newscast. As a podcast producer for KCUR Studios and host of the podcast A People’s History of Kansas City, I help investigate questions and local curiosities in a way that brings listeners along for adventures with plot twists and thought-provoking ideas. Sometimes there isn’t an easy answer in the end – but my hope is that we all leave with a greater understanding of the city we live in. Reach me at mackenzie@kcur.org.