During his monthly appearance on Husker Sports Nightly, Nebraska athletic director Bill Moos was asked about running back Maurice Washington and the criminal charges that came to light on Monday.
Washington is facing criminal charges under California’s “revenge porn” law, as well as a child pornography charge, in connection to a video of a 15-year-old allegedly being sexually assaulted, according to a report published Monday by NBC Bay Area’s Investigative Unit.
“Obviously we’re looking into it every way we can but it’s a legal matter,” Moos said Tuesday. “We want to be sure Maurice is cooperating, which he is. We also want to make sure he knows he has a great deal of support. And then really the legal authorities and the whole system kind of guides it from here on out.”
When asked what Nebraska did after it learned about the charges against Washington last fall, Moos reiterated a similar message to what Nebraska shared Monday.
“We were inquisitive but there wasn’t a lot of conversation that went any further than, ‘We have a concern and something happened in California and we’ll keep you informed,’” Moos said. “That’s how it panned out.”
Washington is the second person to be criminally charged in connection to the video, according to the report by NBC Bay Area’s Investigative Unit. The video was recorded in 2016. One of the teenage boys depicted in the video of the alleged sexual assault was arrested in 2016 and placed on probation for distribution of child pornography after he recorded the video and sent copies to classmates.
Other news and notes from Moos’ Sports Nightly appearance:
>> Moos also mentioned head coach Tim Miles and the Nebraska basketball team, saying the Huskers need “somebody to step and be that leader who can rally his teammates." Moos fears the struggles Nebraska has faced will continue until that happens.
As for Miles specifically, Moos reiterated what he said on his January Sports Nightly appearance that he would not disrupt the Huskers’ season.
He also offered that “Miles is a good coach, loves his players, loves Nebraska” and that he had a talk with Miles and Miles' players last week.
Nebraska is 13-11 overall (3-10 Big Ten), and has lost seven straight games. The Huskers face Minnesota at Pinnacle Bank Arena on Wednesday.
>> As for his process for exploring coaching candidates, Moos had a simple answer: "At the end of the day, I'm the search committee."
He did go into a little more in depth on his search process later in the show as callers asked questions, saying that “nobody bats a thousand” in coaching hires. With that said, Moos takes pride in his track record of coaching hires to date.
>> One caller asked about former coach Mike Riley’s buyout, noting the $6 million Nebraska paid. Riley’s salary in the AAF is more than his salary at Oregon State, but the Huskers have already paid a lump sum for the buyout. Moos said that’s been standard operating procedure for Nebraska in the past but that it “has already been looked at.”
Moos believes "mitigating damage should be a big part, in my opinion, of contracts. Especially those of that magnitude." The challenge in this case is that Riley had very little mitigation and wasn’t making much at Oregon State. Plus his new salary was obtained after the lump sum had been paid.
>> The new Nebraska gymnastics facility is in progress at the Bob Devaney Sports Center, and Moos said the pre-fab walls are going up now. He confirmed the Huskers are on schedule, so it won’t be long before the project is complete.
"It'll be as fine as any in the country,” he said.
>> In response to a question on adding a men’s rifle team, Moos said Nebraska is not currently considering adding any new varsity sports. With that said, he added that he’s never cut a program as an athletic director and has added several.