Baylor associate athletic director Heath Nielsen was arrested earlier this month on a misdemeanor assault warrant for an attack on a local sports reporter. Photo courtesy McLennan County Jail
Baylor associate athletic director Heath Nielsen was arrested after assaulting reporter James McBride while he was taking a picture with a player on the field at McLane Stadium following a Bears' game against TCU on Nov. 5.
Nielsen was arrested three days after the incident and charged with misdemeanor assault with bodily injury. McBride, who works for The Blaze News in Keller, Texas, reported having visible scratches and pain in his throat.
"I had asked the player if I could take a photo with him (and) he said yes," McBride told KWTX-TV, via ESPN.com. "I was leaning back to take the photo. I heard somebody who I didn't know at this point in time yell from my right-hand side, saying 'no interviews on the field.'
"About that time, they came in and tomahawk-chopped, trying to knock the phone that I had taken the picture with out of my hand. They were unsuccessful in trying to do that, and when they couldn't do that, they came up and they grabbed my throat, and I pulled back. Whenever I looked up, I saw that it was Heath Nielsen."
Nielsen, who has worked for Baylor for 17 years, purportedly told McBride that he would "never (expletive) work in this business again. You're abusing your privileges on the field."
Nielsen made headlines in 2014 when the Big 12 fined him $1,000 after he criticized officials on his Twitter account.
Baylor football coach Art Briles was fired last May and university president Ken Starr and athletic director Ian McCaw resigned after the program failed to take action against alleged rapes and assaults committed by football players.