LSU was aware of multiple sexual assault claims made against former football players and ignored them over several years, according to a report from USA Today. The report states that a total of nine players have had allegations and complaints of sexual misconduct or violence against women since Ed Orgeron took over the program in September 2016.
A member of the LSU diving team reported to the LSU administration that running back Derrius Guice, who played for the Tigers from 2015-17, raped her friend at a party in the spring of 2016. This comes after a report surfaced in August that Guice raped two women in 2016. It is unclear whether the member of the diving team is one of those women.
It was the first of several allegations against Guice that the administration ignored, according to the report.
A women's tennis player reported a second rape allegation against Guice in April 2017. Two other women told administrators that Guice took a nude photo of one of their friends at a party and shared it with members of the LSU football staff.
The report states that LSU did not follow the proper protocols in all instances, which allowed Guice to continue to play football.
"We are unwavering in our commitment to respond promptly to any reports of misconduct, to investigate these reports in a manner that is fair and equitable, to support victims of sexual assault, and to protect the privacy of our students according to the law," LSU said in a statement to USA Today. "Putting an end to sexual assault is an institutional priority, and we are constantly working to achieve that goal."
The report also indicates that at least seven LSU officials were aware of multiple other instances involving other LSU players, including former wide receiver Drake Davis who allegedly was abusive toward his girlfriend. The women told police that six instances of abuse took place starting in May 2017, according to the report. He was arrested in August 2018 for dating violence and suspended from the team. He was arrested one month later after allegedly violated court order and continued to assault his girlfriend.
The Advocate reported Friday that LSU Police did not pursue further charges in August 2018 because it feared repercussions from local businessman Jim Bernhard. Documents state that Bernhard is Davis' legal guardian even though court records of an official adoption do not exist.
An attorney representing LSU told USA Today that it also received rape allegations against running back Tae Provens, linebacker Jacob Phillips and tight end Zach Sheffer, as well as an allegation against safety Grant Delpit in which he allegedly recorded a woman during sex without her permission and shared it with others. Delpit denied the allegations and none of the players were disciplined by the school.
The full investigation by USA Today also details several instances of administrators ignoring allegations against non-athletes.
It's the latest, and most alarming negative news story to hit the LSU program since it won the 2019 national title. The school self-imposed sanctions for rules violations by former players and individuals associated with the program. Former wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. was banned from the facilities for two years for handing out cash to players on the field of the Mercedes-Benz Superdome following its national title win over Clemson in January 2020. A booster also funneled money through a hospital foundation to provide cash to a former player's family.
LSU docked itself eight scholarships over the next two years as a result of its investigation.