James Franklin Knew Alleged Victim in Vanderbilt Rape Case, According to Defense Attorneys

By Ty Duffy


Defense attorneys for Brandon Vandenberg, a former player charged in the Vanderbilt rape case, allege former coach James Franklin knew the alleged victim. According to a motion filed by the defense, Franklin met with the alleged victim about creating an apparent hostess program for recruiting at Vanderbilt. The attorneys allege he also contacted her four days after the alleged rape.

"Referring to records, the attorneys said the victim was contacted by Franklin and Galt during a medical examination four days after the rape to explain “that they cared about her because she assisted them with recruiting.” It went on to say that at some point, “Coach Franklin called her in for a private meeting and told her he wanted her to get fifteen pretty girls together and form a team to assist with the recruiting even though he knew it was against the rules. He added that all the other colleges did it.”"

Franklin potentially putting the alleged victim in contact with the football program, if substantiated, would add a significant wrinkle to the story. Vandenberg’s attorneys also feel texts between Franklin and members of the football staff and athletic department were some of the relevant evidence withheld from them or destroyed. The District Attorney cleared Franklin publicly of any wrongdoing last September.

Franklin previously aroused controversy for claiming he doesn’t hire an assistant unless his wife is a “D-1 Recruit.”

Franklin, Vanderbilt, and Penn State declined comment to the Tennessean.

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