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State board of Education fires University of Idaho athletic director

The Idaho State Board of Education has fired University of Idaho Athletic Director Rob Spear after an investigation into how his department handled sexual assault and harassment complaints.

The Idaho Statesman reported the board made the unanimous decision August 16 at an open meeting in Pocatello, designating the firing as one done for “convenience” – which means Spear will likely be paid for the time left on his contract.

Spear has been on paid administrative leave since April 3 while the investigation was underway.

The investigation was launched after the Statesman ran a series of stories reporting on complaints by three different women, including two student athletes, against a football player in 2012 and 2013. Both the university and Spear have acknowledged that Title IX policy wasn’t followed when one of the female student athletes accused the football player of sexual assault; the football player was later dismissed from the team when a surveillance video surfaced backing the woman’s allegation. All three allegations were reported to school officials and Moscow Police at the time.

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