Men’s basketball team at USU-Eastern suspended after allegations of sexual assault on Price campus

Posted at 3:50 PM, Sep 11, 2015
and last updated 2015-09-11 23:44:09-04

PRICE, Utah – The entire men's basketball team at Utah State University-Eastern has been suspended from practice and other team activities in the wake of allegations a female student was sexually assaulted in a dorm in Price.

Tim Vitale, Executive Director of Public Relations and Marketing for Utah State University, said Friday the action comes after allegations were raised last week that a female student was sexually assaulted in a dorm at the USU-Eastern campus in Price.

Vitale said some people may assume that by taking action against the full team they are insinuating all are involved, however he said at this point they aren’t sure if some, any or none of the players are involved but are suspending the entire team as they investigate the incident.

Campus police from USU-Eastern are being assisted by campus police from USU’s main location in Logan, and, while Price PD has consulted on the case, Vitale said at this point campus police  in Price are still handling the investigation.

Details about the specific allegations were not released, Vitale said, as they still being investigated and authorities still have a lot of people to interview about the alleged assault.

So far none of the parties involved have been identified.

USU-Eastern student Dakota Allred said the allegations were shocking.

“I think it’s ridiculous," she said. "I wasn’t expecting it at all. I mean, a little town like this, you don’t ever see something like that coming.”

While school-sanctioned practices are cancelled, three members of the team gathered to practice unofficially Friday afternoon. Sophomore point guard Phil Winston was among them, and he addressed the issue.

“Everybody makes decisions in their lives, and they got to live with them," he said.

Sophomore shooting guard Royale Ewing said, “To be honest, I’m sort of disappointed and surprised."

Ewing said the school chancellor told the team about the allegations on Wednesday, and he said he knows the victim but wasn't present when the alleged incident occurred. He said it surprises him his teammates may have been involved.

“Just me knowing the guys on the team, and the short time that I know them, I don’t sense any of that behavior," he said.

FOX 13 News has reached out to authorities for more information on the case, and we will update this story as more details become available.