Kevin Durant can do it, but the Kansas Jayhawks cannot.
Seven members of the Kansas women’s rowing team have been suspended pending an investigation into their creation of fake social media profiles designed to skirt the school’s rules on social media usage, the University Daily Kansan reports.
The suspensions came after the discovery of fake Instagram accounts, or “Finstas” as they are commonly known, by Kansas rowing coaches.
In an email sent to the seven rowers on April 12 by Kansas coach Carrie Cook-Callen and provided to the Kansan, the rowers were accused of violating section 501 of the Kansas Athletics Policies and Procedures Manual. Among several other prohibited behaviors on social media that include showing use of alcohol, tobacco, and drugs on social media, section 501 of the manual states, “I will not create fake or alias social media accounts. I understand that any information placed on any social media site is a reflection of me, my team, Kansas Athletics and the University of Kansas.”
This has become a news story because the players have been suspended since last month, and they say the school isn’t telling them what’s going on and really seems to be taking its time getting to the bottom of what appears to be an open-and-shut matter.
“There’s been basically no [communication]. I’m having to text coaches and they keep telling us that we’re going to be treated as individuals, that not everyone has had their investigations by KU Athletics so they can’t move forward,” said one of the rowers, a junior on the team. “But we’ve already missed [three] competitions, which is more than if you’d failed a drug test twice. And they won’t give us a date for a meeting or when we can hear anything about when we can be unsuspended.”
They also say most of the other players on the team have fake social media accounts, and they don’t understand why it’s just the seven of them being disciplined.
Kansas, as schools often do in these situations, is not commenting. That being the case, my sympathies are for the athletes. They broke a rule, although not a very important one, and without an explanation from the school, it’s hard to come up with an honorable justification for keeping them in the dark.