Monday, February 20, 2012

BU students on Nicastro's arrest: 'Wouldn't you learn your lesson?'

By Annie Maroon/DFP Staff

Early Sunday morning, Boston University men’s hockey defenseman Max Nicastro was arrested for an alleged on-campus incident of sexual assault. This is the second time this season that a BU men’s hockey player has been arrested on such charges. Former Terrier Corey Trivino is still going through the legal process following seven separate charges stemming from an alleged on-campus incident that occurred on Dec. 11.

Nicastro has been suspended indefinitely from the hockey team while the matter is investigated. He will be arraigned in Brighton District Court on Tuesday.

As the news of Nicastro’s arrest spread quickly across campus on Sunday, students expressed varied opinions on the alleged incident.

College of Communication sophomore Kyle Rohde said he was surprised to hear the news, especially in light of the fact that senior forward Trivino was removed from the team in December after also being charged with assault to rape, among other things, after his own incident.

“Just the fact that it’s already happened this year, it was mind-blowing when I read it,” Rohde said. “Just the fact that it’s already happened this year, for it to happen again, I just can’t believe it. It’s like, wouldn’t you learn your lesson? Your whole career in front of you, and now he’s probably under the influence just making terrible decisions.”



With this incident coming just more than two months after Trivino’s arrest, some students said they think there is now a potential to generalize Nicastro and Trivino’s actions as behavior that is representative of the entire BU hockey team. Students agreed that those generalizations, while a possible result of Nicastro’s arrest, are not a fair representation of all BU athletes.

“I think it’s kind of a shame,” said College of General Studies freshman Gabby Miller, “because I think that now there’s the potential to have that stigma against all the hockey players and all of BU athletics.”

Habib Khan, a College of Engineering sophomore, agreed.

“They can be good guys, I’m sure, but there’s always a couple of bad seeds in there who feel like they deserve more than they could get,” he said.

Other students commented on the hockey culture at BU and the preferential treatment they have seen athletes receive both in the classroom and in social situations. Students said the special treatment hockey players receive feeds into their bad behavior.

“I think that BU even has fueled the fire – how they treat them, how they’re featured, how their academic expectations are lowered and watered down compared to other students because they have hockey,” said CGS sophomore Sarah Mercurio.

Mercurio said Nicastro’s inappropriate behavior extends beyond just him as an individual.

“It’s not just him, it’s that whole group of friends and what they think they can do,” Mercurio said. “When you see them out, socially, how they act and what they think, how they think they can act, first of all . . . He’s going after [girls] just because he thinks everyone wants him.”

Other students agreed that the culture around BU hockey holds athletes to different standards in the eyes of the university.

“People come to BU for hockey,” said Cara Liebman, a College of Arts and Sciences sophomore. “They’re put on a pedestal, obviously, not only for their lifestyle but for the privileges that they’re given, and BU is kind of provoking that. It doesn’t really say anything good about the university that nothing’s being changed even since the last [Trivino’s] arrest.”

And while Nicastro’s alleged actions will likely be connected to BU coach Jack Parker and the whole BU athletics department, as well as the entire university, not all students agreed that was right. Rohde said he doesn’t think it’s fair to put blame on Parker for the actions of his players away from the rink.

“Parker can only control so much,” Rohde said. “He runs the team, practices, games – he’s been a coach for so long and been such a legend, he’s had to have had some impact on teaching players how to be good men, and unfortunately, sometimes stuff like this happens outside that I don’t think should be poorly reflected on him at all. It shouldn’t, but it will, because this is also the second time this has happened in a year.”

But not everybody agreed that Parker is blameless in this scenario. After all, Nicastro’s arrest and subsequent suspension marks the sixth time in the past three seasons that a player has been either suspended from or kicked off the team due to his actions off the ice.

“It could go a lot of ways, not disciplining players enough or sending a message,” said School of Management senior Chris Laucks. “Maybe he’s just taking it too easy on them. You know, obviously we don’t know what’s going on behind closed doors with the players but it definitely makes you think that even with kicking Trivino off, that happened and everyone was pretty surprised. It’s really unfortunate.”

Will McColl, a SMG senior and one of the leaders of BU’s student fan group, The Dog Pound, said in an email he will continue cheering for the team nonetheless.

“This doesn’t affect how I support the team on the ice,” he said. “Directing any disgust or disappointment at [senior captain Chris] Connolly, [junior alternate captain Alex] Chiasson, [junior alternate captain Justin] Courtnall, and the rest of the team that will be on the ice in [BU’s games this weekend against the University of Vermont] for the actions of those not there does not seem much different to me than directing it at any BU student not on the team. There is nothing so far to suggest that anyone else was present or involved in any manner.”

Tim Healey and Arielle Aronson contributed to the reporting of this story.

23 comments:

  1. As a long, long time BU hockey fan this is beyond belief. Is this the culture of the BU campus now? Where is President brown in this situation. This reflects on the entire BU community, alums and students. I remember what Arielle said on a live hockey blog a while ago. She stated that a former BU student?- hockey player, now in the NHL, wanted to take a hard science course but did not as it would interfer with his hockey training. When I was in school the hockey players in my classwere there every day and did the work assigned. This is the basis of the problem. I do not believe that one can not do a regular college load and train and play hockey. If hockey was a means to an end and not an end in itself we would have more young men respecting the $50,000 education they are getting and not wind up deep in debt as almost all others that are their "classmates". Please don't tell me one can not find players who don't want an education. I played sports, went to all classes, and worked after school when I was free. It can be done. Parker, who has done a great job with this team, must be put on the carpett for this new case.

    ReplyDelete
  2. They're not all like that--look at Ryan Ruikka! I have always been incredibly impressed with the fact that he probably has a better GPA than a lot of non-athletes at BU, even though HE is an athlete. They're not all taking it for granted, that's for sure.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ruikka better study hard because his skills show that he will never get paid to play hockey.

      Delete
  3. I continue to think that any of these quotes that make BU look bad are liars or BC fans in disguise!

    That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Teach me to be brave like you, Anonymous.

      Delete
  4. I'm a BC guy. I feel bad for everyone connected with this unfortunate incident. The institution's fine name should not be tarnished on the account of irresponsible and morally repugnant individuals.

    Years ago, my School had to endure a Gambling Scandal within our Football Program. As most know, Football is historically viewed as the marquee Sport in BC Athletics even though our Hockey Program is more successful.

    It took a firing of a Head Coach, dismissal of the Athletic Director and complete revamp of the entire Program before it was restored to acceptable BC standards of integrity and rigor.

    I don't want to see Jack Parker suffer for this or his reputation smeared across message boards by immature Trolls. But when high-profile scandals like this happens all in one season, someone usually takes a fall. In this case, I think Parker may have Coached his last season at BU. The house needs to be burnt to the ground before it can be rebuilt.

    The Media will be all over this story for days and weeks and probably months to come. Questions will asked, investigations will be opened and new allegations may emerge. There is no winning involved, only degrees of losing. The sooner this is addressed by the Administration and Board of Trustees, the sooner the healing process can begin.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Jack Parker needs to step down. He has lost all control of this team, not only at the cost of BU's reputation and hockey program, but more important, at the cost of BU women's safety, dignity and respect. Female students are now being assaulted and raped by a team whose coach either doesn't care...or doesn't have a clue. The players free fall, are treated like rock stars off the ice, and given no instruction other than how to get to the NHL. Innocent women are victimized, and now two players careers and lives have been rocked to the core. Back to back sexual assaults? This is inexcuseable. Someone has to answer to this. Parker, pack your bags.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Not even Maine under scumbag Walsh was as bad as BU now.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Interesting photo on Nicastro's PUBLIC Facebook page

    http://theproductionline.us/red-wings-draft-pick-max-nicastro-arrested/

    ReplyDelete
  8. On USCHO, Vermont fans say they will be chanting "BU Rapists".

    Thanks Nicastro!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. pretty sure I heard some BC fans chanting "No means No" at the Beanpot

      Delete
    2. Wow! I'm disgusted by the fact you all fail to remember he is innocent until proven guilty. Until the facts come out we should not judge him, the team, and BU. No does mean no, but throwing yourself at these guys and then claiming rape is a different story.

      I think people are being unfair to both Max and the "alleged" victim by not waiting for the truth to come out and ruining a young man's reputation over allegations. It really surprises me since BU students are supposed to be so educated and should already know this.

      Delete
    3. Don't kid yourself, Vermont fans aren't even allowed to chant at the opposing teams goalies. Hopefully they have some class, especially with it being their Senior Weekend.

      Delete
  9. Nicastros date may have changed her mind during her usual early morning walk of shame back to her own dorm. What happened to innocent until proven guilty. It very well could have been consensual.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Nicastro is the victim here! These girls ask for it. Think about the important thing. Some random girl's welfare or the welfare of our nationally ranked hockey team. I mean come on people!

    This is hockey, it is very, very, very, very, important! Much more than some dumb girl!

    ReplyDelete
  11. USCHO posters are calling out the lack of integrity and professionalism of Freep reporters.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Parker tells the Boston Globe that BU doesn't cover anything up.

    So, like, what about that time John Sabo kicked a kid's face in outside of a Comm Ave bar and that was swept under the rug so he could play through the end of the season?

    Interesting.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My cousin was charged with something similar 3 years ago and all charges were dropped. I think the same thing happened to a Mercyhurst player last year and again was found not guilty!!!!!Morale of those stories: innocent until proven guilty and girls think before you lay accusations because you sobered up and thought: I shouldn't have done this!

      Delete
  13. This is a very serious, sad event. Whether it is proven a fact or not, this young man has had his life change radically. As much of this hurts the young man, the effect on the victim cannot be measured. She will be scarred for the rest of her life. This is just plain horrible. Nobody can come out of this for the better, even if found innocent. Do not worry about UVM or BC. Worry about about these two young people. College hockey fan!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We don't know that yet. By "that" I mean any of what you said. Wait for facts and truths to come out, then talk about radical changes, permanent trauma, etc.

      Just wait patiently. For now, based on what we know, ANYTHING is possible because... We know next to nothing!

      Delete
    2. "We know next to nothing!"

      That quote might be the most truthful thing ever posted on this site.

      Delete
  14. Parker should step down.

    ReplyDelete