Oregon student journalist's story scored national headlines in Sports Illustrated

Kenny Jacoby (KMTR image)

EUGENE, Ore. -- An article that caught Senator Ron Wyden’s attention was written by a reporter who knows the University of Oregon well – he’s a student there.

A story he wrote for the school newspaper received national headlines.

“Yeah, seeing the byline there is pretty cool,” said University of Oregon senior Kenny Jacoby, who caught some eyes with his story published in Sports Illustrated in late October.

His story criticized the university's lack of response regarding UO basketball player Kavell Bigby Williams' sexual assault case.

"They have certain standard operating procedures that they put in place that they were supposed to follow in any case where a student was accused of sexual misconduct, and then I come to learn that those procedures were not followed in this case," Jacoby told us.

He says it took him nearly five months—working in between classes--to investigate and then publish the story.

He then decided to take it beyond a student newspaper.

"When I showed Sports Illustrated, they were immediately interested in the story," Jacoby said. "They had the same questions I did and wanted to find out more."

So did Oregon Senator Ron Wyden. In early November, he demanded answers from UO President Michael Schill, referencing Jacoby's article in his letter as evidence.

"It was really cool to get the senator involved,” said Jacoby, “because I think it was an important story and he realized that, and it kind of took him to kick the UO into action."

Eventually President Schill responded with a 42-page letter defending the university's handling of the sexual assault case.

"But we have the facts, and the facts show the policies were not followed, and that’s really where the story lies," Jacoby explained.

He graduates from the University of Oregon with a Bachelors in Journalism in just four weeks.

But he says whether he's a Duck or not, he's not finished reporting on the U of O.

As for his plans for after college, he says he has several applications out to newspapers across the west coast and he's waiting to hear back.

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