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Was the San Jose hockey incident fabricated by a parent or a team coverup? Hard to tell from this.

These are tough calls for parent and coaches and school administrators alike when an accusation like this occurs. Reporters naturally feel safer trusting first-hand accounts, not hearsay from a parent, and yet parental reports have uncovered numerous hazing incidents. This is a tough one to read about–Moderator

Story by Mark Gomez of the San Jose paper:

Fresh off a suspension that threatened its season, the San Jose State men’s hockey team is now back on the ice and preparing to host a national championship tournament.

University officials won’t disclose the outcome of the internal investigation into allegations that players drank and participated in hazing while traveling to a team event. But the team’s suspension was lifted after six games and there has been no disciplinary action against team members.

The Spartans are focused on their dual roles as host and participant in the upcoming American Collegiate Hockey Association Division II national championship tournament. San Jose State plays its first game in the tournament on March 15, although its seeding has been affected because of six forfeited games during the suspension.

“Missing those games was secondary to us getting cleared to play in the tournament,” said senior Andy Dickerson, a player and president of the hockey club. “There was definitely some worry on our part.”

Dickerson, who said he could not comment on the investigation, said players fully cooperated with school officials who investigated the claim.

San Jose State’s involvement in the national tournament was jeopardized in February when a team parent accused players of drinking and hazing other players during travel to a team event. There were unsubstantiated reports of a YouTube video that showed the hazing of a player and underage team members drinking.

School officials did not find any video.The university suspended the entire team on Feb. 3 and launched an internal investigation. The process was expedited at the request of President Don Kassing and lasted about 10 days.

San Jose State spokeswoman Pat Lopes Harris would not specifically discuss the allegation or investigation but did say many conversations took place.

“The club in general will take part in some educational projects as a result of the investigation,” said Harris, who added that the hockey club is “a spectacular student group that has a terrific record on campus.”

The Men’s Division II hockey team is a club sport, not a National Collegiate Athletic Association sanctioned team. Still, club athletes sign a university contract not to use alcohol during games or while traveling to and from games.

“Drinking and club sports do not mix under any circumstances,” Harris said.

San Jose State hockey coach Ron Glasow said his team is now moving forward following the “bogus claim from an anonymous accuser.”

“We have no animosity towards anybody,” said Glasow, currently in his 20th season as San Jose State’s coach. “We look at it as a character-building thing… I’m very proud of my players and how they handled the whole situation.”

By Hank Nuwer

Hank Nuwer is the Indiana-based author of Broken Pledges: The Deadly Rite of Hazing, High School Hazing, Wrongs of Passage and The Hazing Reader. He has written articles or columns on hazing for the Sunday Times of India, Toronto Globe & Mail, Harper's Magazine, Orlando Sentinel, The Chronicle of Higher Education and the New York Times Sunday Magazine. His new book is Hazing: Destroying Young Lives from Indiana University Press.

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