No. 3 BYU loses after dismissing player for honor code violation
Brigham Young University center Brandon Davies has been suspended for the rest of the season.
March 3rd, 2011
11:11 AM ET

No. 3 BYU loses after dismissing player for honor code violation

Sticking to principles appears to carry a steep cost for the nation's third-ranked college basketball team.

A day after Brigham Young University dismissed center Brandon Davies from the team for violating the school's strict honor code, the No. 3-ranked Cougars were throttled Wednesday by unranked New Mexico.

"The honor code really reflects who we are as a university. It defines us and it does make us different," BYU spokeswoman Carrie Jenkins told CNN affiliate KSTU-TV.

Davies, a 6-9 sophomore from Provo, was the team's top rebounder and third-leading scorer. He received the Cougars' Academic Excellence award last season, according to an online profile.

BYU had been gunning for a high seed in the upcoming NCAA Tournament, but the team's fortunes took a tumble with Wednesday night's 82-64 loss to New Mexico.

University officials said Davies admitted violating the honor code at BYU, which is owned and operated by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, also known as the Mormon Church.

The honor code requires all faculty, staff and students to:

  • Be honest;
  • Live a chaste and virtuous life;
  • Obey the law and all campus policies;
  • Use clean language;
  • Respect others;
  • Abstain from alcoholic beverages, tobacco, tea, coffee and substance abuse;
  • Participate regularly in church services;
  • Observe dress and grooming standards;
  • Encourage others in their commitment to comply with the honor code.

The code forbids homosexual behavior and bars members of the opposite sex from going beyond the lobby of the school's single-sex dormitories.

The dress and grooming standards forbid beards, tattoos and piercings for men and short or form-fitting clothes or bare feet in public for women.

The university did not say which part of the code Davies violated, but it did say he had not committed a crime. Davies' future as a student at BYU and his status for next season have yet to be determined.

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Filed under: College basketball • Religion • Sports • Utah
soundoff (511 Responses)
  1. DonnieJ

    Chaste makes waste.

    March 3, 2011 at 2:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • RMD

      Chaste does not make unwanted pregnancies. Just sayin'.

      March 3, 2011 at 3:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • Brian61

      You are right about the waste part. Lack of control has nearly decimated black families in America. The latest illegitimacy numbers are over 70%. High illegitimacy rates are directly tied to high crime rates and poor educational performance. What a waste . . .

      March 3, 2011 at 4:58 pm | Report abuse |
  2. jennifer

    wow- tea and coffee are as evil as alcohol and drugs.... BYU would not be my cup of tea... haha

    March 3, 2011 at 2:55 pm | Report abuse |

    After reading a lot of these post, I think I now know why things are so screwed up... The young man willing signed the Honor Code. No one made him, they did not threaten him. If he didn't like the rules he was free to go somewhere else. He is a talented player, I'm sure he would have be given a great deal to play at another university. However, he signed the code, he broke the code, he pays the price. It does not matter what the code states, he agreed to it. He admits to violating the code and should accept the penalty. This is the problem, there are rules, when you break them, you have consequences. If you can't handle the consequences of violating rules you agreed to, then you have a maturity and responsibity issues. Yes, I am calling those who believe his removal wrong - whinny spoiled brats who have never been held accountable for anything you have done. Just for the record I am not mormon, nor am a fundamental christian, I am just a person who believes we should be responsible for the choices we make.

    March 3, 2011 at 2:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • MelT


      March 3, 2011 at 3:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jerry

      I agree wholeheartedly with your basic principles but I want to correct one thing. He was NOT free to go someplace else. Once the big money people convince a high school senior to sign a letter of intent he is their slave. He'd have to sit and wait to play if he decided to change schools. For the great majority of NCAA Division I schools money making athletic programs are 100% about money making. That's why I find this refreshing even though I would try to deter my son from attending BYU. It would be his decision but I would try to convince him to get an education that is more broad minded.

      March 3, 2011 at 3:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chicago

      I completely agree. I am not a religious person at all. I do not attend any services of any kind. I do however believe that when people make a comitment to do something and they willingly agree and sign their names to it, they need to be held accountable. We would all be a lot better off if people took personal responsibility for their actions. This young man made a decision to attend a school knowing full well the standards that he was going to be held to. He needs to be held to those standards. It is a tough lesson, but I would be willing to bet that this young man will learn from it and be better for it.

      March 3, 2011 at 4:00 pm | Report abuse |
  4. jamanta

    phsycos. You got one life to live, so live it! These crazy demands are just insane. Can't drink a coffee for Christ sake???

    March 3, 2011 at 2:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bruce Branz

      Absolutely right. In fact, christ turned water into wine and drank sames many, many times. So wine is the true holy water !

      March 3, 2011 at 3:13 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Lawrence

    Be honest;
    Use clean language;
    Respect others;

    So what happened to Glenn Beck? If this is what the church believes, then why do 80% of Utah Mormons idolize Glenn Beck and Sarah Palin. I love BYU and the good members of the church. Unfortunately a lot of Mormons from Utah are simply HYPOCRITES.

    March 3, 2011 at 3:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • PGH

      I'm Mormon, from Salt Lake, go to BYU, and can honestly say I know of one person who likes Glen Beck, and know of no one who likes Sarah Palin. Are you making this stuff up? If not, I guess it just reflects the crowd you hang out with.

      March 3, 2011 at 3:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • NJ AirForce Wife

      I have the misfortune of currently living in Utah. I hate this state to the depths of my soul, but I do have to say that while they are quirky, insistent when knocking on my door, dress weird, drive terrible, talk a LOT, don't know when to take a hint... I don't personally have anything against Utah Mormons. Their religion is not my cup of tea and I'll cut my own arm off before I believe if I live a good Mormon life, I'll have my own galaxy.

      Yes, Utah Mormons are a breed apart, but you have that with every religion. The West Boro Baptist Church is a perfect example that ONE religion does not adhere to the basic principles of their particular belief.

      March 3, 2011 at 3:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • Eastern Guy

      I'm from Pennsylvania, I'm LDS, I graduated from BYU 25 years ago, and now I work there. I like Glenn Beck, can't stand Sarah Palin, and have a mind of my own. I support the university's decision, as difficult as I know it was. I also have a tremendous amount of respect for Brandon Davies.

      March 3, 2011 at 3:29 pm | Report abuse |

      Unless you have pole number or actually know 80% of all Utah Mormons then please don't make claims. Oh and LDS women can go barefoot in public. Not a good idea in most places mind you for anyone but as far as I know thee is no dress code about going barefoot. Heck half the women in my ward wear flip flops!
      And yes I am LDS and find Beck annoying. I hate all talking heads. Frankly I would like to lock Michel Moore and Glenn Beck up in a cell and let them lie themselves to death.
      And just ignore Joane Johnson for she is a fool and knows not of she speaks. All races may become elders and it has been that way for decades.

      March 3, 2011 at 4:40 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Buddy

    If BYU is willing to give up NCAA mens b-ball tournament hopes over a can of Coke, then that's their choice. Nutbags.

    March 3, 2011 at 3:01 pm | Report abuse |
  7. SLC

    Dumb Dumb Dumb Dumb Dumb

    March 3, 2011 at 3:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • MM

      Haha!! I had that South Park episode in my head as I read this as well 🙂

      March 3, 2011 at 3:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • SP4Life

      YES!!! Dumb. Dumb. Dumb... And let's not forget to blame Canada for this as well.

      March 3, 2011 at 5:42 pm | Report abuse |
  8. AJ

    It seems that Brigham Young himself violated the honor code via Mountain Meadows Massacre. It is disturbing that the church would honor such a man.

    March 3, 2011 at 3:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • Eastern Guy

      Brigham Young and the church were exonerated for that awful massacre. With the climate of the day you don't serious think the US government would leave the mormons alone if the church was responsible for what happened, do you? If so, I've got a bridge in the Sahara I'd like to sell you.

      March 3, 2011 at 3:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • paige

      AJ – maybe you should read up a little better on your history – from reliable sources

      March 3, 2011 at 3:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • AJ

      Exonerated by who? Church scholars?

      March 3, 2011 at 3:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • cass

      I am an academic historian. Not of LDS, so I am no expert. After reading all of these comments about the Mountain Meadows Massacre, I did a brief search through some articles. Now, it seems that there is debate about whether or not Brigham Young was directly involved or not. So, I think AJ needs to slow down on his criticism. Still, I don't see where or how Young could be "exonerated." I also find that word usage a little troubling. To the bigger issue, the kid knew what he was getting into. I find these rules quite quirky and against human nature. I would never be able to sign up for it. But, he did, and so he should face the consequences. He seems like an honorable young man and it is a real shame he has to face such public scrutiny.

      March 3, 2011 at 6:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • Nottaway

      If I remember right, the bishop in charge of the group that did the actual killing said he had orders from Brigham Young. At the trial, no one would directly accuse BY of having ordered that. Some take that to mean exoneration. Some take that to mean BY was involved, but so powerful and important his influence prevented him from being tried.
      Or this was a nutball Bishop who took it upon himself to avenge all the persecution and slaughter that drove the Mormons out west. Glossed that over, didn't you, AJ!

      March 3, 2011 at 7:00 pm | Report abuse |
  9. GE

    More like the MORON church geez its not that serious...I am not convinced that everyone in BYU abide by this hog wash it just sounds like a bunch of political mess had that been a non african american he would still be on the team without question...but BYU got their butts kicked we will see who has the last laugh when its all said and done when the season is over

    March 3, 2011 at 3:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • paige

      You're right! At the end of the season, BYU honored their word. They kept to the rules they set long ago as to what is appropriate for those who represent and attend the school. At the end of the season, their commitment means something. At the end of the season, having integrity matters more than "winning". Good point GE. 😀

      March 3, 2011 at 3:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • NJ AirForce Wife

      Now that's just mean and uncalled for. Yea, I'm not a fan of Mormons... in fact I'll throw a party when my husband gets orders to leave this piece of land called Utah... but, that doesn't mean that this particular aspect of their religion is ludicrous.

      Jews don't eat pork. Is that so different from Mormons not consuming alcohol or caffeine?

      March 3, 2011 at 3:33 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Glenn

    This is horrible. He should have waited to have "relations" with one of his wives! GIGGIDY.

    March 3, 2011 at 3:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • jamanta


      March 3, 2011 at 3:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • kbrown

      LOL...that was funny.

      March 3, 2011 at 3:42 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Grunt-11B

    1st: I'm not Mormon....Jewish by blood, atheist by choice. (Im proof there are athiests in foxholes.)

    I honestly can say I'm happy BYU stepped up and supported the Honor Code. Today with things being so politically correct in the US, more rules and punishments are often bent, or brushed aside as a result of not wanting to harm a persons future. Example: The US Army....I'm a squad leader, in charge of 11 soldiers and a 1.6 million dollar Stryker ICV.
    You know on a daily basis how many troops fail a urinalysis, or go AWOL, or even Desert from they're obligations? How many of those actually get the Dishonorable Discharge? It damn near takes an act of congress now days to get a dishonorable discharge. And from day 1 of signing the contract you are made aware of the punishments involved.

    Honestly we need to stop pulling punches and start holding those accountible for they're choices and actions. He signed the Honor code....he knew what he was getting into. He failed to live up to the Honor Code.

    March 3, 2011 at 3:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • NJ AirForce Wife

      Well said.

      March 3, 2011 at 3:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • kbrown

      Sure,'re in charge. whatever

      March 3, 2011 at 3:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chicago

      Nicely said and I completely agree.

      March 3, 2011 at 4:11 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Conditional Justice

    Interesting Discussion. I'm not sure I understand the double standards that are presented by the honor code. In 2004 Rafael Araujo was a tatooed player on the BYU basketball team. I don't recall hearing that he was dismissed for honor code violations. However, he did make the news. If I recall correctly he also used patches to cover up his tats.

    Are tatoos acceptable or not? Is drinking a little coffee or tea a little acceptable as long as you promise no to do it again? This case appears to be one of zero tolerance. As with any justice system it depends on who is handing out the punishment. Get a basetball friendly on the review board and it might pass. However, if you have a bunch of hard core fundamentalist handing out the sentence, the conditions turn black and white very quickly.

    March 3, 2011 at 3:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • PGH

      There are certain rules at BYU that are less tolerated than others. Most things they give you warnings about. But this was serious. But what people don't realize is, Davies is fine with this. He chose to tell his LDS leaders as a way of repenting. He knew what it would result in, but he has integrity. I'm proud of what he did. As for BYU, they did what everyone knew they would do.

      March 3, 2011 at 3:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jared

      Araujo had those tattoos prior to attending BYU. The honor code doesn't state that you have to have never done any of those things. It says you cannot do them while attending BYU.

      March 3, 2011 at 3:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • Eastern Guy

      A person who has tattoos from his or her past can attend BYU. However, one cannot get a tattoo while a student there and expect to continue attending. That's the difference.

      March 3, 2011 at 3:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • PGH

      Well, he actually got a few of those after starting BYU. I don't remember what BYU did, but that was a lesser offense.

      March 3, 2011 at 5:07 pm | Report abuse |
  13. GE

    And what kind of code bans "Coffee and Tea???!!!!!!" who da heck gets in trouble drinking coffee and tea?!?!?!!!!

    March 3, 2011 at 3:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dedufus

      The prohibition against cofee and tea are part of LDS beliefs. There is a code (for all members, not just kids at BYU) known as the 'Word of Wisdom', and prohibits consumption of alcohol, coffee, tea, tobacco, etc. Think of it as similar to the Jewish kosher rules, or Catholics eating fish on Fridays. The code also says that students attend church, and take religion classes. This is simply part of life at an LDS school. This kids was raised with these standards all his life...

      March 3, 2011 at 8:47 pm | Report abuse |
  14. T Diddy

    Mormons are complete freaks and total hypocrites!!!! They own Coke for Christ's sake! Caffeine is bad for us but we'll gladly sell it to you. If you want to know just how stupid this religion is, just watch the South Park episode. Everything South Park says about these morons is completely true.

    March 3, 2011 at 3:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • Eastern Guy

      What are you smoking? The mormon church doesn't own coke! Sounds like you'd believe anything the rumor mill spits out. That bit of hogwash was proven just that many years ago. Unfortunately, the internet hangs on to bad facts for a long time.

      March 3, 2011 at 3:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chicago are an embarassment.

      March 3, 2011 at 4:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • C.

      Hypocrites? Well, they told a player when he came that if he did not commit to certain lifestyle choices that he would potentially forfeit his ability to play. He chose to act in a certain way contrary to that commitment, and the school dismissed him from the team. At great personal cost to their athletic department at a critical time in the season.

      Doesn't sound hypocritical to me. Just the opposite in fact.

      March 3, 2011 at 4:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • Man Bear Pig

      aahahahahaha, south park is the best, and totally accurate 100% of the time. i'm super cereal.

      March 3, 2011 at 5:10 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Anne

    Fascinating! Makes me reconsider extending credit to my customers. They know the rules, they sign on the doted line, they don't have to purchase my products. But they do and I expect them to actually pay. But if other "things" get in the way and it becomes uncomfortable for them to pay the invoice, should they just call us up and excuse themselves from the obligation? I know it is more difficult to get credit these days. And, after reading some of your comments, my company for one, will tighten our requirements. If people think violators should learn to lie better – no one should be trusted with credit, let alone other more important things that require an understanding of integrity. This is not a religious issue. This is one of the issues that brought down the Roman Empire and other ancient civilizations. Where do you stand – seriously?

    March 3, 2011 at 3:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • MM

      Wow – what a completely flawed analogy. First, you won't – or you won't have those customers. Second, since you're obviously without fault, remember that the next time you exceed the speed limit and read what you signed when you were granted the privilege of driving in your particular state. Good Grief.

      March 3, 2011 at 3:32 pm | Report abuse |
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