NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ – The Rutgers University Board of Governors today released the results of an independent review of the events that preceded the dismissal of former head men’s basketball coach Mike Rice.
The review, conducted by Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP, offers several recommendations to improve university policies and procedures. The recommendations include implementation of a universitywide risk assessment program and more formal coordination among human resources officials across the institution.
The report also calls for renewed attention to implementation of reforms proposed in 2008 by the university-sponsored Athletic Review Committee, which advocated the university administration’s closer oversight of the Division of Intercollegiate Athletics.
“We welcome the results of this review and the recommendations that Skadden has made,” said Gerald C. Harvey, chair of the Board of Governors. “This report helps us better understand the issues that emerged in connection with the basketball program. This has been a difficult period. But the review and this report will help us learn from these events and move forward, guided by the lessons it outlines. We will continue to study these recommendations closely and I am committed to working with President Barchi to develop a plan for implementation.”
Harvey said he welcomed the report’s emphasis on making risk management a priority. “That is one of the great benefits of the Skadden report,” he said. “We are going to improve our risk management, and I believe these recommendations will help strengthen the university’s ability to manage challenging situations that inevitably arise at a large and complex institution. If done appropriately, these reforms will provide a long-term benefit to our student athletes, to all students and the entire university community.”
Rutgers University President Robert L. Barchi added, “I’m pleased that this important review is now complete. The Skadden firm conducted a thorough analysis, and its detailed recommendations will help us reassess our administrative structures and policies. I look forward to studying the report and we will take the appropriate steps to improve our internal procedures.”
The independent review was led by former federal judge Stephen C. Robinson and former federal prosecutor Christopher J. Gunther. The review was first announced April 8. Skadden was hired May 8.
Robinson, who was also U.S. Attorney for the District of Connecticut, served as a U.S. District Judge for the Southern District of New York before joining Skadden in 2010. He previously served as a special assistant to the director of the FBI. Gunther is a former assistant U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York and a specialist in white-collar crime. Both lawyers have extensive experience conducting internal investigations.
The report is available to the public and can be found at www.rutgers.edu/sites/default/files/Final-Skadden%20Report%20-7-22-2013.pdf.
Established in 1766, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, is America’s eighth oldest institution of higher learning and one of the nation’s premier public research universities. Serving more than 65,000 students on campuses, centers, institutes and other locations throughout the state, Rutgers is the only public university in New Jersey that is a member of the prestigious Association of American Universities.