Baylor University campus

Baylor University and a former financial aid staffer resolved a lawsuit in which the staffer claimed to face retaliation for reinstating the scholarship of a former football player accused of sexual assault. 

Staff photo — Rod Aydelotte

Baylor University’s director of sports ministry will leave the school this summer, according to a Baylor statement.

Wes Yeary, a nine-year Baylor employee, will assist in a restructuring of the athletics department program until his departure at the end of the fiscal year.

“In recent months, Baylor University has evaluated how to strengthen its sports ministry program — a program that provides spiritually formative experiences for over 500 student-athletes,” the statement said. “Through this process, it was determined the existing structure was in need of modification resulting in restructuring of positions, seeking additional qualifications for new positions and expansion of ministerial resources for student athletes.”

“We are forever grateful to Wes for his nine years of service and appreciate the compassion he has served Baylor’s student-athletes, coaches and staff,” the statement said.

Assistant Director of Sports Ministries Norris Blount has resigned to pursue other opportunities, the statement said.

In August 2015, Yeary testified in defense of former football player Sam Ukwuachu, who was later convicted of sexual assault. Yeary said he would be comfortable with Ukwuachu returning to his home and being around his children.

Yeary also testified that Ukwuachu’s victim told him about the assault. He said he told her that if she would have called him on the night of the rape, he would have given her a ride home.

Yeary was allegedly involved in a separate case involving former Baylor football player Devin Chafin, who was dismissed from the football team June 1.

In a Title IX lawsuit against the university, Dolores Lozano accuses Baylor officials of not adequately responding to her claims of domestic violence against Chafin.

Lozano reported an assault to Yeary, the suit alleges, and Yeary then gave her literature to assist her in spiritual self-worth and preservation. Physical violence continued in the following weeks, the lawsuit alleges. Chafin was never arrested.

Staffers fired amid the scandal include Tom Hill, who was associate athletic director of community relations and special projects, and Colin Shillinglaw, who was assistant athletic director of football operations.

Head football coach Art Briles was fired May 26, and Athletic Director Ian McCaw resigned days later after being sanctioned and placed on probation.

Phillip has covered higher education for the Tribune-Herald since November 2015.

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