Update: On January 31st, 2020 — the same day we published this post! — the New York Times reported that Alberto Salazar has been temporarily banned from coaching by the United States Center for SafeSport. The Center is investigating Salazar’s treatment of women during his time at the Nike Oregon Project; depending on the results of the investigation, he may be subject to a lifetime ban. Salazar is already banned for four years due to anti-doping violations.
Last November, the runner Mary Cain alleged in the New York Times that former head coach Alberto Salazar and his colleagues at the Nike Oregon Project emotionally abused her and withheld food, essentially starving her in an attempt to get her to reach an unrealistic, untenable weight. Cain described in detail how mistreatment and permanent hunger drove her into a spiral of depression and self-harm as Salazar’s “coaching” eventually ruined her professional career. Nike acted quickly after Cain’s piece was published: Salazar, already banned for doping violations, was fired, and the Nike Oregon Project shut down (though some of its athletes are still coached by Salazar’s assistant, Pete Julian.) Nike professed to find her allegations “troubling” and, of course, claimed the company had no idea anything was wrong. After an attempt at victim blaming — stating that Cain had never mentioned anything at the time — Nike pledged to conduct an internal investigation into what happened to Cain and other women, including Amy Yoder Begley, under Salazar’s watch.
Did the words “internal investigation” just spark an inner scream of rage for you, too? Prepare your inner ears for more screams, because Nike has now finished their “investigation,” and surprise! Women’s Running reported this week that the results are… a secret. Read more >>