UW football player played in major games despite rape investigation

University of Washington football standout Tybo Rogers will soon be arraigned on charges of rape, according to the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office.

Head coach Jedd Fisch confirmed Rogers was suspended after he was arrested for rape allegations in two separate incidents between Oct. 2023 and Nov. 2023.

Two young women claimed they were brutally attacked by Rogers. One of them was a UW student, the other attended Seattle Central Community College.

In public, UW Football was business as usual, on the road to a national championship bid, but without their standout freshman running back, Rogers.

In Dec. 2023, Dan Raley of Dailymotion interviewed former offensive coordinator Ryan Grubb, asking why Rogers was missing on the field. Raley said to the coach, "Tybo didn’t go to the Pac 12 Championship, and he’s made all these strides as one of the most used freshmen. Yes, he’s had a few little bumps on the way — is he in good standing with the program right now?"

Grubb responded, "He is. You know, we’re working through some things, some challenges he had off the field. I can’t comment on what it was exactly."

Those challenges off the field were believed to be a Title IX investigation. Under Title IX, the school has a federally mandated responsibility to provide a learning environment free from assault, fear, and discrimination.

According to the timeline laid out by Seattle Police detectives, the Seattle Central Community College student made a Title IX complaint against Rogers in late November. The woman claimed Rogers brutally raped her. Seattle Police Department confirmed the woman also filed a police report.

The Title IX complaint was filed around the same time coaches were emailing about taking Rogers off the roster, according to court documents. While the reason for removing Rogers was never written, the detective believes "there is a connection between his suspension and her disclosure of the assault."   

"Unfortunately, there is a history of universities that have placed their football programs, which bring in an enormous amount of revenue to an institution, over reports of sexual violence," said Cari Simon, attorney and Title IX expert with The Fierberg National Law Group.

UW’s Student-Athlete Handbook describes what happens next when Title IX cases are filed. The handbook states UW officials are allowed to place student athletes on administrative suspension, pending investigation, or before the investigation even begins.

On Dec. 1, the Huskies traveled to the Pac 12 Championship without Rogers. During a press conference, former head coach Kalen DeBoer publicly downplayed Rogers’ absence. A reporter asked the coach, "You didn’t have Tybo, is that an injury situation or something else?"

DeBoer responded, "Yeah, he just wasn’t available for us. And we have five guys, and it still wasn’t like a bowl game where we travel everyone this last week."

Rogers, however, was allowed to return and play in the Sugar Bowl on Jan. 1, and then the College Football National Championship on Jan. 8. According to the handbook, the decision to allow Rogers to play had to be approved by the athletic director. Troy Dannen held the athletic director position at the time.

After Rogers’ arrest, questions began circulating if the university cleared him of the accusations, despite a pending investigation, just to get him back on the field in time for those big games. Simon said UW has some explaining to do.

"They feel more compelled to protect the athletic programs that are so important to the institutions than they are to survivors. But ultimately, it doesn’t protect the football program, it doesn’t protect any athletic program when you allow predators that you’re aware of to continue to play over the lives of your students. That doesn’t, ultimately, reflect on the programs that we want to have," said Simon.

Genevieve Haas, a spokesperson for UW wrote in a statement, "Under federal student privacy laws, we cannot comment on any individual student, however, we assess every report we receive and take action whenever we are able to do so based on the information that is made available to us. We fully support survivors in having agency to determine what information they choose to share, and to what degree they may or may not engage in either a university process or police investigation. We also want to strongly encourage anyone, whether they are a UW student, employee, or member of the public to reach out to our Title IX office if they have been harmed by a member of the UW community."

With felony charges pending against Rogers, current head coach Fisch said the player has been suspended.

"As soon as we found out about any allegation, we suspended [him] indefinitely from the program," said Fisch.

Seattle Police Department confirmed the investigation remains ongoing.


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The prosecutor’s office said Rogers is scheduled for an arraignment on charges against him in both cases on April 18.