WACO, Texas — A woman who said she was raped by two Oregon State football players and two other men in 1998 shared her story with the Baylor football team.
Brenda Tracy’s talk with the Bears came two months after a 13-page report said Baylor failed to properly handle accusations of sexual assault, including some against former football players.
After hearing about Baylor’s case, Tracy had called for the NCAA to shut down the football program.
The Associated Press generally doesn’t identify sexual assault victims, but Tracy has spoken publicly about her experience. She has met with NCAA officials and said she will be speaking to other college teams, with expectations that she will be contacted by more.
According to her Twitter profile, she is a “Single mother, Registered Nurse, DV/SA Survivor turned Activist, Speaker, & Civilian Lobbyist. I believe one person can change the world…”
Tracy told ESPN Central Texas radio that Baylor football and basketball players were engaged and paying attention, and that she told them that they have an opportunity to exact real change and be an example to follow. She was invited to campus by Baylor acting head football coach Jim Grobe, who replaced Art Briles within days after the report from the Pepper Hamilton law firm.
“One thing I try to do is make this real for people. Look at me, I’m a human being, I could be your neighbor, I could be your mother, I could be the person behind you at the grocery store,” she said. “But I spent all these years wanting to kill myself and hating myself because someone else took my body and I did not give it to them.”
Tracy said what she tries to do is put a “face and a person and a human experience to rape.”
A month ago, Tracy shared her story with Nebraska’s team. The Cornhuskers are coached by Mike Riley, who was Oregon State’s coach in 1998.
In a post on her Twitter account (@brendatracy24) after the talk, which was closed to the public, Tracy described Grobe as “a good man with a good heart” while thanking Baylor for hosting her. She also thanked Baylor players who had tweeted her afterward, responding that she appreciated them and telling them to remember the pledge they made to each other.
Grobe told the AP before Tracy’s visit that he had spoken with Riley, who told him it was a hard thing to hear but educational.
“We’ve got a great group of guys here, not good guys, great guys, great kids that would never be involved in these kinds of situations, but I think educating the good kids is just as important as educating the edgy guys,” Grobe said earlier this month.
“The number one thing that I hope is that it brings home that these are real issues. It does pertain to you because you are your brother’s keeper. … It’s your responsibility to make sure that not only are you behaving well, but that your teammates are behaving well, and we can take care of each other.”
Tracy said she talked to good men and called them out, asking them what can they do “and how can we change this together.”