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More Men’s Teams Suspended for Online Commentary

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The Princeton men’s swimming and diving team and the men’s soccer team at Washington University in St. Louis have joined the ranks of men’s teams facing suspension after reports were made alleging their participation in public comments and actions of a sexist or racist nature.

Members of the Washington University women’s soccer team made a report last Wednesday alerting university officials to the existence of an online document kept by the men’s team in 2015 containing sexually explicit and degrading commentary about members of the women’s team. Washington University announced the suspension of the men’s team on Friday, which will continue until the university has finished its investigation into the allegations.

Lori S. White, vice chancellor of student affairs at Washington University, told NBC News, "We are saddened and deeply troubled by these allegations and are taking them very seriously. Let me be clear: there is absolutely no place at Washington University for sexism, discrimination or harassment of any kind.”

Another complaint was filed last week at Princeton University, resulting in a suspended season for the men’s swimming and diving team. Allegations aimed at the Princeton team included concerns about the team’s LISTSERV account, which is claimed to harbor vulgar, misogynistic and racist content.

The Princeton team will not participate in their two remaining regularly scheduled swim meets this season, or in the Ivy League championships in February.

Ford Family Director of Athletics Mollie Marcoux Samaan said in a release to princeton.edu, "We make clear to all of our student-athletes that they represent Princeton University at all times, on and off the playing surface and in and out of season, and we expect appropriate, respectful conduct from them at all times. The behavior that we have learned about is simply unacceptable. It is antithetical to the values of our athletic program and of the University, and will not be tolerated.

Samaan went on to say, "We have also developed a program that will be introduced next month that focuses on the responsible and productive use of social media. We will continue to focus on such programs as well as redouble our ongoing efforts to achieve our primary goal, which is education through athletics."

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