Sport: Eight Nike Oregon Project athletes confirm Mary Cain's allegations of abuse to Sports Illustrated - - PressFrom - US
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Sport Eight Nike Oregon Project athletes confirm Mary Cain's allegations of abuse to Sports Illustrated

05:50  14 november  2019
05:50  14 november  2019 Source:   sports.yahoo.com

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Mary Cain , here at the 2014 IAAF World Junior Championships, last week revealed abuses she suffered under coach Alberto Salazar. On Wednesday, Sports Illustrated published a story in which eight other Oregon Project runners validated Cain ’ s claims and in some cases revealed their own

The sports company's move came after former teen phenom Mary Cain told a harrowing account of mental and physical abuse she says she suffered A string of elite athletes — Cain ' s former Oregon Project teammates — say they back her claims. "I joined Nike because I wanted to be the best

Last week Mary Cain, once considered the future of American middle-distance running, recorded a scathing op-ed for the New York Times in which she alleged emotional abuse by Alberto Salazar while she was part of the vaunted Nike Oregon Project.

Mary Cain wearing a red shirt: Mary Cain, here at the 2014 IAAF World Junior Championships, last week revealed abuses she suffered under coach Alberto Salazar. (Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)© Provided by Oath Inc. Mary Cain, here at the 2014 IAAF World Junior Championships, last week revealed abuses she suffered under coach Alberto Salazar. (Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)

On Wednesday, Sports Illustrated published a story in which eight other Oregon Project runners validated Cain’s claims and in some cases revealed their own stories of abuse.

‘You can’t talk to kids about this stuff’

Cain’s allegations centers on Salazar’s obsession with her weight, though the SI story shows she was not the only one the coach targeted.

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CBS Sports Home. Former elite runner Mary Cain claimed in a first-person New York Times op-ed this week that she suffered physical and mental abuse during her time with the Nike Oregon Project while it was being run by the now disgraced coach Alberto Salazar. "We take the allegations extremely seriously and will launch an immediate investigation to hear from former Oregon Project

Nike vows investigation following Mary Cain ’ s allegations of abuse at Oregon Project . Cain joined the Nike Oregon Project shortly after Salazar contacted her at age 16. On social media, several former members of the Oregon Project confirmed or added to Cain ’ s accounts of Salazar’s fixation

A phenom at Bronxville High in Westchester, N.Y., Cain shattered numerous age group, high school and U.S. junior records; in 2013, at just 17, she qualified for the IAAF World Championships in the 1500 meters.

After graduating from high school, Cain signed with Nike and joined the Oregon Project, moving to Oregon to train with Salazar and his all-male coaching staff at Nike headquarters. She joined a group that included Matthew Centrowitz, Galen Rupp, Mo Farah and Kara Goucher, all of them among the best in the world at their respective events.

Cain said Salazar settled on an arbitrary number of 114 pounds for her target weight, and the abuse over her weight seemingly began not long after she arrived in Oregon.

During the 2015 indoor track season, Dr. Charles Cain, Mary’s father, called Salazar after multiple phone calls from his upset daughter.

Mary Cain details alleged physical and emotional abuse at the hands of Nike, Alberto Salazar

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Exclusive: Sports Illustrated will reduce print output to monthly. Yahoo Finance. Coca-Cola Christmas Truck tour dates revealed - find out when it's in your area. Eight Nike Oregon Project athletes confirm Mary Cain ' s allegations of abuse to Sports Illustrated .

Amid the fallout from Cain ’ s comments, Sports Illustrated contacted nine former Nike Oregon Project members, including Cain , about the culture In an email to the Times, Salazar denied most of Cain ’ s allegations and told The Oregonian that Cain ’ s parents were “deeply involved in her training” during

“I would tell Alberto, ‘You can’t talk to kids about this stuff. It’s a problem.’ I asked them repeatedly and clearly to stop talking about her weight,” Charles Cain told SI.

In a statement to SI, Salazar continued to deny Cain’s claims, writing that he “did not know and was never told by Mary, her parents or any athletes that the discussion of weight was abusive.

“Because runner weight is inherently tied to performance for elite runners, I saw it as part of my job as an endurance sport coach to help the team’s runners understand the impact weight has on performance. I had a lot of frank discussions about weight with all of my athletes—both women and men.”

In May 2015, Cain was depressed and turned to cutting herself. She told the New York Times that after struggling in a 1500 race that spring Salazar had weight-shamed her in front of other runners, including non-Oregon Project athletes. That same night, Cain says, she told Salazar and Darren Treasure, the team’s so-called sports psychologist, that she was cutting herself and they ignored her.

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Even when the former teenage phenomenon Mary Cain told the New York Times she was “emotionally and physically abused by a system designed by Alberto Yet, while the company insisted it was taking Cain ’ s claims “extremely seriously” and that “these allegations are completely inconsistent with our

Mary Cain speaks out about being emotionally and physically abused by Oregon Project coach Alberto "I joined Nike because I wanted to be the best female athlete ever," Cain says in an Cain ' s rise to stardom was profiled by Sports Illustrated in July 2013. She decided to forego her

‘Obsessed with your weight loss’

Cam Levins, a Canadian marathoner, told SI in a statement that he “absolutely” believes Cain and that he can “corroborate that she was told to lose weight and that by doing so she would be more successful.”

On Instagram, Levins wrote that he knew the coaching staff was “obsessed with your weight loss” and apologized as her former teammate for what had happened.

Olympian Dathan Ritzenhein also apologized for the abuse Cain experienced.

An Oregon Project runner from 2009-2014, Ritzenhein said, “She was so happy and full of joy. She was so young… As a father of a daughter who is not much younger than Mary was then, and as a coach of women, it makes me sick to see what happened to her.”

Cain and Ritzenhein shared a condo in Park City, Utah while the two trained there, and Cain recalls stealing her teammate’s Clif Bars, sneaking the food to her room because she was afraid to let Salazar see her eating.

But Cain wasn’t the only one.

‘The biggest butt on the starting line’

Alberto Salazar standing in front of a crowd: Alberto Salazar has been accused by several former Oregon Project athletes of creating a toxic culture and being obsessed with runners' weight. (Michael Steele/Getty Images)© Provided by Oath Inc. Alberto Salazar has been accused by several former Oregon Project athletes of creating a toxic culture and being obsessed with runners' weight. (Michael Steele/Getty Images)

Amy Yoder Begley trained with Salazar before Cain’s arrival to the Oregon Project and represented the United States in the 10,000 meters at the 2008 Olympics.

Runner's abuse allegations embolden other female athletes

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Nike told BBC Sport that Cain ' s allegations are "completely inconsistent" with its values. However, it added that it previously had not been made aware of the issues and that the athlete was "seeking to rejoin the Oregon Project and Alberto's team as recently as April of this year". It also said it would

Former teen running star Mary Cain ' s account this week of alleged physical and emotional abuse at the recently disbanded Nike Oregon Project is prompting more top Nike says it's investigating, but the cascade of allegations that have followed Oregon Project director Alberto Salazar's four-year

When she announced that she was leaving the Project in 2011 she cited injuries and differing views from Salazar on how to rehab, but after Cain’s revelations last week, Yoder Begley said she’d been kicked out.

“I was told I was too fat and ‘had the biggest butt on the starting line’,” Yoder Begley tweeted last week. “This brings those painful memories back... I have first hand experience with what [Cain] described in the [New York Times].”

Goucher remembers Yoder Begley having to be weighed in front of others before the 2008 Olympic Trials and Salazar telling her, “You have no shot. You’re too fat.”

Goucher said, “They were hung up on her butt. He was obsessed with the fact that it hung out of her shorts. She was tiny and it was a constant thing with her. They were so mean to Amy that it was crazy.”

Ritzenhein remembers similar things coaches said about Yoder Begley.

Steve Magness, who was an Oregon Project assistant coach in 2011-2012, reviewed records and told SI that Yoder Begley’s body fat percentage was 11.1 using a hydrostatic method and 12.4 using skin calipers. That’s a dangerously low percentage for women and can lead to health problems, beyond loss of one’s period.

Cain told the New York Times she had five broken bones during her time with Salazar, a possible side effect of her weight loss and low body fat.

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When Mary Cain got the call from Nike it was a dream come true. It was 2013 and the teenage track star was the fastest girl in America. Being asked to join the Nike Oregon Project , a prestigious running program led by famed track coach Alberto Salazar, seemed like the next step to world domination.

Cain joined the disbanded Nike Oregon Project run by Salazar in 2013, soon after competing in the Nike will investigate allegations of abuse by runner Mary Cain while she was a member of Alberto Salazar was banned from the sport for four years by the U. S . Anti-Doping Agency for experiments

Goucher’s weight was also a discussion among the coaching staff, particularly after she had her son in 2010.

Adam Goucher, Kara’s husband and another Oregon Project athlete tweeted that after the 2011 Boston Marathon, when Kara ran a personal-best time of 2:24:52 just six months after giving birth, Salazar approached him and said, “Don’t tell Kara, but she is still too heavy. She needs to lose her baby weight if she wants to be fast again.”

Calls for outside investigation

Salazar, a three-time winner of the New York City Marathon and one-time winner of the Boston Marathon, was handed a four-year ban by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) last month; not long after, Nike shut down the Oregon Project.

Nike CEO Mark Parker is stepping down after 13 years at the helm, though the company denies it had any ties to Salazar’s scandals.

But Nike is apparently opening an in-house investigation; Cain said an attorney with the company’s legal department had left her multiple voicemails, and Yoder Begley, Levins and Ritzehein had also gotten phone calls.

Cain, however, wants to see Nike open itself to an outside investigation.

“I believe Nike should investigate,” Cain said. “But I also believe it should not be Nike investigating themselves. … I would propose it be an organization such as USADA, the USOPC or SafeSport. We need a third party that is unbiased and will actually do the due diligence to determine what needs to change to actually support athletes going forward.”

Travis Tygart, the CEO of USADA, said there is a “mountain of evidence” on the toxic culture Salazar cultivated with the Oregon Project, and that an Nike’s investigation would simply be a “charade” to protect the now-iconic brand.

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