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March 4th, 2011
10:42 AM ET

BYU stands by call to dismiss star athlete for 'honor code' violation

By the CNN Wire Staff

Brigham Young University officials on Thursday stood by the decision to dismiss a standout player on the Cougars' highly ranked men's basketball team, saying they are treating Brandon Davies just like they would any other student.

The school's athletic department announced Tuesday that Davies - a starting forward from Provo would no longer be part of the team this season. The university came into the week ranked third in the nation in the Associated Press Top 25 and Coaches polls.

Officials did not specify why, exactly, Davies was being suspended during a press conference Thursday.

But the Salt Lake Tribune, citing "multiple sources," said that the sophomore violated the honor code provision prohibiting premarital sex among students.

Many schools have honor codes, with students mandated to live and learn by certain standards. Still, the one that applies for students at Brigham Young's campuses in Utah, Hawaii and Idaho is more extensive than most, part of a conscious effort to "provide an education in an atmosphere consistent with the ideals and principles of the The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints."

The BYU code include requirements for "modest, neat and clean" dress and grooming; abstinence from alcohol, tobacco or illegal substances; any physical intimacy that exhibits homosexual feelings; prohibiting members of the opposite sex from going in one's bedroom areas; and regularly participation in church services, be they in the Mormon or another religious faith.

Tom Holmoe, the school's athletic director, said Thursday that its honor code is something that the university does not shy away from. And it applies equally to all students, athletes or not, with Davies simply being held to the same high standards as anyone else.

"We understand that people across the country might think this is foreign to them, and they are shocked and surprised," said Holmoe. "But for us, we deal with this quite often."

While officials would not specify when the process began, Holmoe said that Davies "was involved from the very beginning."

He was dropped from the team just weeks ahead of the NCAA basketball tournament, in which BYU - led by star Jimmer Fredette - is a contender to be one of four top seeds. The Cougars lost their first game without Davies to New Mexico on Wednesday, only their third defeat this season.

"We all love Brandon," Dave Rose, the team's coach, told reporters Thursday. "He's a great teammate, and he's been great for our team."

Rose admitted that the team was "disappointed" by Davies' ouster. But especially with a few days' hindsight, the coach said they were ready to tackle the "huge challenge" that lay ahead of them.

The decision to remove Davies was made by the university athletics department, pending the results of the full honor code investigation.

School spokeswoman Carri Jenkins said there's no timetable for that probe, which could potentially lead to Davies' permanent dismissal from the team or from the school.

But Holmoe said that he hopes Davies, who remains a student at BYU, returns to the court next season.

"I know Brandon Davies, and what I'm looking forward to ... is to see him come back strong," the athletic director told reporters. "This young man has dreams and goals."

Holmoe said officials and coaches at BYU don't view the honor code as a negative, admitting there is some "self-selection" as to which students embrace it and come to the university.

"We get kids who want to come here, who say this is what they want," he said. "We recruit to our strengths, and that is a strength."

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints • Mormonism • Sex • United States • Utah

soundoff (59 Responses)
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  3. fakhredin

    Events of 2011 and 2012: Shaul Mofaz in the spring of 2011 Israeli Prime Minister is – his government 14 to 15 months as it takes – and soldiers Muslim commander of Imam Mahdi – Israel's destruction – the King of Jordan Syria Iraq captured to the summer and fall 2011 – he fights with Turkey – the end of summer 2011 – and his soldiers in the desert between Mecca and Medina are down to earth – at the end of 2011 –
    Jordanian and Western troops – are involved in Egypt – Saudi king dies in its power struggle starts – -45P/Honda-Mrkos comet meteors in 14 to 20 August 2011 to deal with the land – its largest in in East Asia comes down
    26 August 2011 a huge star in the sky East to explode three or seven days to show signs of burns and this is the Imam Mahdi – In the spring of 2011 earthquake in northern Israel can happen – Jesus between the months of May to August 2012 are shown – and Imam Mahdi will help to establish justice in the world

    March 9, 2011 at 6:34 am |
  4. fakhredin

    Events of 2011 and 2012: Shaul Mofaz in the spring of 2011 Israeli Prime Minister is – his government 14 to 15 months as it takes – and soldiers Muslim commander of Imam Mahdi – Israel’s destruction – the King of Jordan Syria Iraq captured to the summer and fall 2011 – he fights with Turkey – the end of summer 2011 – and his soldiers in the desert between Mecca and Medina are down to earth – at the end of 2011 –
    Jordanian and Western troops – are involved in Egypt – Saudi king dies in its power struggle starts – -45P/Honda-Mrkos comet meteors in 14 to 20 August 2011 to deal with the land – its largest in in East Asia comes down
    26 August 2011 a huge star in the sky East to explode three or seven days to show signs of burns and this is the Imam Mahdi – In the spring of 2011 earthquake in northern Israel can happen – Jesus between the months of May to August 2012 are shown – and Imam Mahdi will help to establish justice in the world

    March 6, 2011 at 10:30 pm |
    • Spiffy

      I predict that in the early spring of 2011, most of the human race will in a mind-boggling diversity of ways prove again and again that they are ignorant and gullible and cruel and intolerant of one another.

      March 7, 2011 at 2:48 am |
  5. JerryD

    And if you believe BYU.. ..have I got a bridge to sell you! I hope I'm wrong. The girlfiriend was impregnated. The young woman involved was most likely white. I seriously doubt this "honor code" violation story... there's more to this from a group that contends the Garden of Eden is Missouri.

    March 6, 2011 at 5:04 pm |
  6. Jah

    lol. i will never date a Mormon girl again. you are spot on. i never felt more out of place. i was very uncomfortable in their church. i dreaded those days. the funny thing about Mormons (and it goes for every single one i have ever met) they seem to lack street smarts and common sense. not sure why. they all seem very haughty to me and for no reason. if i was that basketball player i would have never gone to BYU for an education or sports scholarship. from everything that i have seen, Mormonism is (was) a racist religion that has evolved and back peddled on their views which are no longer politically correct. it was easy when slaves worked the fields to say black people were cursed, but now they retract such statement (sergio) as if they were never. i am sure if you went to the Mormon church today, they would not even speak of such things.

    March 6, 2011 at 11:55 am |
    • Al Bluengreenenbrownenburger

      If the Nazi Party was run by the Brady Bunch, the result would be the Mormons

      March 6, 2011 at 12:12 pm |
    • Jah

      Sadly enough,you are probably dead-on.

      March 6, 2011 at 12:22 pm |
  7. Al Bluengreenenbrownenburger

    Sergio, there were no horses or elephants or wheat or scimitars or swords or so much else in the Americas in the time that the events in the Book of Mormon supposedly took place. This is broadly supported by archaeologists; indeed, there is no support for what you are saying amongst non-Mormon researchers. There have been some rather lame revisionist attempts to prove otherwise made by LDS people, but they have not fared well against scrutiny.

    You are a professor? I would find that statement more convincing if your grammar and spelling and punctuation was a lot better. What are you a professor of, and where? You certainly are not an archaeologist . . . maybe of Mormon Theology, but not of science.

    March 5, 2011 at 8:12 pm |
    • Jah

      Not only were there no elephants (and its silly to think there were), but there were no golden plates either. Mormonism blows me away with the amount of followers it has. I dated a girl who was Mormon (and yes i nailed her), and i had to go to church with her every Sunday to keep the relationship going. It was amazing being a Catholic in a Mormon Church and going along with it all. very basic brainwashing techniques. Sacrament in the 1st hour: people tell stories about faith and then always cry. Second hour they separate the men from the woman: i did not like this part and usually just watched clueless people talk about stupid shet. and then the 3rd hour was bible study, which was the most interesting part. they never once opened the book of Mormon. we only opened the new testament and read stories from that. whats with the plagiarism? how can you take a book form another religion, read from that one, not read the ridiculous one you wrote, and say they (Christians) are confused and lost and only Mormons are going to heaven. it was about as realistic as a certified glass looker. I just am amazed how many people buy into it.

      March 6, 2011 at 11:30 am |
    • Al Bluengreenenbrownenburger

      I bet you never date another Mormon girl again if it means going to their services. I've had to go to a few Mormon events, and it always was like a Mormon version of a Nuremburg Rally, but choreographed and done very incompetently (a sloppy mess). Why do Mormon-run events always have to be such clumsy, unimaginative propaganda-fests?

      March 6, 2011 at 11:40 am |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.