Community college courting former UO basketball player accused of rape

Community college courting former UO basketball player accused of rape »Play Video
Brandon Austin.

One of three University of Oregon basketball players kicked off the team because of sex assault allegations may soon be back in the game.

Brandon Austin was a bench player for the men's basketball team. Earlier this year, a woman accused Austin and two teammates of raping her during a party. None of the men were charged.

A team in Kansas is now courting Austin and on Wednesday, KATU’s On Your Side Investigators spoke with their sports information director about what they’re up to.

"His name surfaced as a potential player and we began the recruitment process,” said Steve Carpenter of Hutchinson Community College in Kansas.

"He was in for a visit,” Carpenter said. “Several people talked to him and now we're evaluating what we learned."

Carpenter says the school was well aware of Austin's history before he was invited over for a visit.

Austin transferred to the University of Oregon in January after being suspended from Providence College in Rhode Island last year. At that school, he was investigated but never charged in another sexual assault case.

Carpenter, meanwhile, says Hutchinson Community College is still investigating Austin’s background and has not yet made a decision about whether to bring him on board.

"We are now into the evaluation part of that process,” Carpenter said, “and that's pretty much where it is."

Carpenter says the school will make a decision soon, though he wouldn't say when.

KATU also spoke with the president of the National Junior College Athletic Association, which HCC is affiliated with. Since Austin has never been charged in these cases, there's nothing stopping the school from recruiting him, the association said.