U of Illinois hires former Big 12 commissioner to consult

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AP) The University of Illinois has hired a consulting firm led by former Big 12 Conference Commissioner Dan Beebe as it deals with allegations of mistreatment by former athletes.

The contract says the Dan Beebe Group was hired this month to help the school ''prevent, identify and appropriately respond to misconduct.'' The cost will be $50,000 for a year.

The contract was first reported by The Champaign News-Gazette (http://bit.ly/1TWjUdJ ). The university provided a copy on request to The Associated Press but a spokeswoman was not available for comment.

The university this year has faced allegations from former football and women's basketball players of mistreatment by coaches. The basketball players sued. A former women's soccer player sued the school claiming she was cleared to play too soon after a concussion.

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Information from: The News-Gazette, http://www.news-gazette.com

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