Accusations Abound At Harvard [Updated]

Here is something you simply don’t see every day.

The day after the collegiate track & field ended with two Crimson athletes earning All-America status at the NCAA Championships, an active member of the Harvard coaching staff — Lauren Kuntz — has written a troubling piece in the Crimson, the student paper at Harvard.

In the piece, Kuntz has written: “Indeed, I have witnessed several coaches for the program endanger the health and well-being of student-athletes. Though these athletes have raised concerns through multiple channels, no visible changes have been made to protect them. I am a coach on the team, and I am speaking out because I can no longer watch as students are harmed.”

This is the second recent piece that has been critical of the coaching staff. In late March, Crimson writer Brittany Ellis penned “A Team Divided,” which included this passage:

Biology professor Daniel E. Lieberman and Business School professor Paul A. Gompers, whose daughter is a member of the program, have criticized [Coach Patrick] Wales-Dinan’s influence on the team’s culture. In December, after collecting accounts from over 20 former and current members of the team, the pair filed a 17-page single-spaced report to University administrators detailing their complaints.

“When two of out of three athletes on a team are quitting, something’s wrong,” Lieberman said in an interview.

Seems like some interesting days ahead in Cambridge.


The Harvard Director of Athletics Robert Scalise wrote the following letter to The Crimson that was published on June 14th:

To the Editor:

A recent op-ed raised a number of concerns about the track and cross country teams and asked “the administration to intervene to ensure that all student-athletes are treated with the dignity and respect they deserve.” On behalf of Harvard Athletics, I want to state unequivocally that our first priority is the health and well-being of our students. As noted in The Crimson’s previous reporting, the administration launched an extensive investigation earlier this year into concerns raised about this team. That process has now concluded, and it revealed a number of areas that must be addressed. These include concerns regarding nutritional support, training, and team culture. The Athletics Department is currently in the process of implementing the recommendations resulting from the investigation and is committed to making visible and meaningful progress.

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