Kim Mulkey, head coach of Baylor University’s women’s basketball team, has had it with the negative scrutiny her school has received over an onslaught of rape allegations.
In comments following her team’s Saturday clinching of the Big 12 regular season championship — Coach Kim’s 500th career win — Mulkey had an impassioned speech in which she encouraged a forceful rebuttal to any parents concerned about their daughters’ on-campus safety.
“If somebody is around you and they ever say, ‘I will never send my daughter to Baylor,’ you should knock them right in the face,” Mulkey said to cheers from her audience.
Coach Kim added that “these kids are on this campus. I work here. My daughter went to school here and it’s the d*** best school in America.”
Her players then encouraged her to drop the mic, Yahoo Sports reports. She responded by doing so.
But that was not the end of her commentary.
— 120 Sports (@120Sports) February 26, 2017
Speaking with local media outlets after the speech, Mulkey said she was sick of hearing all the criticisms and that she was specifically tired of hearing about it on the national level from people who “don’t know what they’re talking about.”
“If they didn’t sit in those meetings and they weren’t a part of the investigation, you’re repeating things that you’ve heard. It’s over. It’s done, and this is a great institution, and I would send my daughter here, and I’d pay for anybody else’s daughter to come here.”
Coach Kim also said she works at the school every day and is “in the know, and I’m tired of hearing it.”
“This is a great institution. The problems we have at Baylor are no different than the problems at any other school in America, period. Move on. Find another story to write,” she added.
Yahoo points out that a Baylor rape allegation came to light as recently as January and that between 2011 and 2014, a total of 31 Baylor University football players were charged in 52 rape allegations.
While the comments have made the coach a hero among her constituents, they also sparked a “Kim Mulkey” trend on Sunday, and the attention outside of Waco, Tx., has been considerably more critical.
Rob Dauster of NBC Sports charged that Mulkey was “out of line” with her comments.
“Kim, you cannot do this,” Dauster writes, adding that no one in the athletic department can claim there problems are “no different” when only two of the 31 students were dismissed from the program and the allegations “cost the football coach [Art Briles], the school president, the school’s athletic director and the school’s Title IX coordinator their jobs.”
Dauster did give Kim Mulkey the benefit of the doubt on being frustrated, acknowledging that he would be, too. After all, “She’s coaching a women’s team at a school that has spent the better part of two years in the news for being unable and unwilling to protect their women. There is no doubt that hurts recruiting.”
He added that “the idea that it is any way is the media’s fault is ridiculous.”
Predictably, other outlets that followed the Baylor rape allegations with horror, such as the Huffington Post, are seizing on the comments of Kim Mulkey as proof the culture is still “violent and toxic.”
— SportsNews (@BizSportsX) February 26, 2017
Coach Mulkey will likely survive the media onslaught in the coming days. Her resume leaves little doubt as to the effectiveness of her ability. In addition to the 500 wins, she has picked up seven straight Big 12 titles (eight altogether) and two NCAA Championships.
But do you think she overstepped in her defense against the Baylor rape allegations? Sound off in the comments section.