According to Matt Boermeester’s girlfriend, the USC kicker was falsely accused of abuse and unfairly punished in the ensuing Title IX investigation against him.
The girlfriend of Matt Boermeester, the alleged victim in the Title IX investigation which prompted the USC kicker’s removal from the football program, says the player was falsely accused and subjected to an unfair investigation by the university.
The LA Times reported a statement released by women’s tennis player Zoe Katz on Sunday, in which she denied any wrongdoing by Boermeester.
Just weeks after kicking the game-winning field goal in the 2017 Rose Bowl, Boermeester was indefinitely suspended because of what USC termed a “student-conduct issue.” Deadspin reported at the time that Boermeester was under investigation for an incident involving his girlfriend.
While the investigation proceeded into the incident, Boermeester was not allowed to return to school or the football program. USC’s 2017 media guide listed Boermeester as a squadman lost.
Katz, who had tweeted a denial of the allegations against Boermeester in January, is now speaking out about exactly what she says happened back in January and through the spring.
Here’s what Katz told the LA Times:
"The Title IX investigation began, Steigerwalt said, after a neighbor witnessed Boermeester and Katz roughhousing. The neighbor told his roommate, who told a coach in USC’s athletic department that Boermeester was abusing Katz. The coach then reported the incident to the Title IX office. Katz said she was summoned to a mandatory meeting with Title IX officials, where she told investigators that the two were playing around. Katz was subsequently told that she “must be afraid of Matt,” she said. She told officials she was not. Boermeester has not been arrested or charged with a crime. “When I told the truth about Matt, in repeated interrogations, I was stereotyped and was told I must be a ‘battered’ woman, and that made me feel demeaned and absurdly profiled,” Katz said. “I understand that domestic violence is a terrible problem, but in no way does that apply to Matt and me.” Katz said that she has “never been abused, assaulted or otherwise mistreated by Matt.”"
The topic of Title IX investigations and violence on college campuses is a complex issue across the nation and USC in particular.
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In 2015, tight end Bryce Dixon was removed from USC’s football program due to a “student-conduct issue” though no criminal charges were filed against him.
Dixon, who said he was treated unfairly during his Title IX investigation, won an appeal to enroll back at the university as a student, but was never cleared to rejoin the football team.
Later, he was arrested and convicted of carjacking and robbery, earning a six-year prison sentence.
Last year, linebackers Osa Masina and Don Hill were accused of sexually assaulting a fellow USC student.
Masina was charged in Utah for a separate incident of alleged sexual assault and is currently awaiting trial. Neither were charged criminally in Los Angeles, but both were removed from the university.