A member of Harvard’s 2012 men’s soccer team rated incoming freshman for the women’s soccer team based on their physical attractiveness and “sexual appeal,” according to a report reviewed by the Harvard Crimson.
The nine-page document was referred to by men’s soccer team members as a “scouting report” and included individual evaluations for each freshman female soccer recruit as well as numerical scores and “paragraph-long assessments” of their appearance.
The descriptions often included lewd sexual talk, such as one woman described as “[looking] like the kind of girl who both likes to dominate and likes to be dominated,” the Crimson reported. Each woman was reportedly assigned a “sexual position” in the document along with her position on the soccer field.
The report was shared through the group’s email list and was made public through Google Groups until recently. Harvard’s Director of Athletics Robert L. Scalise told the Crimson that he reviewed the document Monday and had not known about it before then.
"We do not condone disparaging remarks about members of our community,” Scalise said in a statement released through the school’s communications office. “We encourage people who have information about disparaging acts or remarks to come forward to authorities in athletics and to university officials so that we can determine the appropriate course of action.”
Scalise told the Crimson that his first action in responding to the document would include speaking to the coaches of both soccer teams as well as the administration of the college.
“We expect all members of our teams to act like members of the Harvard community, and we hold them to the same standards as everyone else,” he said in the statement. “Treating others with respect is one of the core values of the college."
Pieter Lehrer, Harvard’s men’s soccer coach since 2013, said in a statement that he was “shocked and disgusted” when he first learned of the report from the Crimson.
“I make it a priority to speak with my current student-athletes about the many lessons learned on and off the playing fields, and I will take this opportunity to address this document from 2012 with my current athletes,” he said. “I hope their seeing how offensive and hurtful this is will be a valuable lesson for everyone involved with this program."
Chris Hamblin, the women’s soccer coach who was promoted to head coach earlier this year, also commented on the document, saying that he is “saddened to see this level of disrespect shown to these women.”
Hamblin continued to say that since Lehrer’s hire at Harvard, Hamblin has seen a “huge shift” in the culture of the men’s soccer team in which Lehrer has fostered a culture of “respect and accountability.”
“The current rapport between the men's and women's teams is founded upon the supportive cultures and mutual respect that exists today between the two programs,” he said.