UT Student Now Being Investigated for Sexual Harassment After Writing His Instructor's Name Wrong

The weaponization of Title IX continues at Tennessee.


Syda Productions

Remember the University of Tennessee student who received a zero on a quiz because he filled in a random name for his lab instructor? Well, he's now being investigated for sexual harassment.

Previously, his professor had merely maintained that his actions—writing the name "Sarah Jackson"—met the technical definition of sexual harassment under Title IX. The university is now apparently looking into the matter.

Here's a refresher. The student, Keaton Wahlbon, had to take a geology quiz featuring the following question: "What is your lab instructor's name? (if you don't remember, make something good up)."

Wahlbon followed the instructions: he didn't remember, so wrote down the first generic girl name that came to mind—Sarah Jackson.

Unbeknowst to Wahlbon, Sarah Jackson is a real person: a pornographic model. Of course, there are hundreds (thousands?) of other Sarah Jacksons in the world, and Wahlbon had no idea that his lab instructor would interpret his answer in such a specific and malicious manner.

His answer was marked "inappropriate" and he received a grade of zero on the quiz. Wahlbon appealed to his professor, Bill Deane, but Deane maintained that Wahlbon had committed sexual harassment.

Wahlbon contacted the head of department because, well, that's nonsense. He told me via email that no resolution has been reached yet.

But according to The Knoxville News Sentinel, the university is now investigating the matter as if a complaint had been filed—even though no one has taken such an action.

"This has better be a very, very, very short Title IX investigation," the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education's Peter Bonilla wrote on Twitter.

In a press release, FIRE said:

FIRE is watching UT's investigation closely and hopes that it will be promptly closed with no charges against the Wahlbon. We also caution UT faculty against setting such a low bar for what constitutes a Title IX violation (which, again, this clearly is not), given the ease with which professors can find themselves the targets of prolonged Title IX investigations for what they say or write, even when the claims against them are baseless.

I've reached out to the professor, who did not respond to a request for comment.

The only thing more ridiculous than giving Wahlbon a zero on his quiz would be finding him guilty of a Title IX investigation. Let's hope the university recognizes how absurd this situation is. And soon.

NEXT: Talkin' Clowns on the Radio

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. Wahlbon appealed to his professor, Bill Deane

    Pictured: Wahlbon appealing to Professor Bil Keane

    1. They make him do that every Sunday.

    2. ...and down there at the bottom is the Family Circus, just waiting to suck.

      1. While that was the best scene, "GO" had others worth referencing. Yet it rarely happens.

  2. They're going to regret this.

    Those Title 9 regulations are written so sloppily it won't take long for MRA's to start using them against feminists

    1. meh, they're going to have to find sympathetic administrators first

    2. You seem to be under the misapprehension that principles matter more than principals.

  3. I don't care if he wrote Charity Bangs, the item specifically demanded he make up something good. Get a good lawyer kid and, if they convict you, sue, sue, sue.

    1. Yep. This is ultimately a golden ticket to at least a good six figure layout from the school. Makes me want to return to university just to bait them into so,etching stupid like this.

  4. He was punished for writing the wrong name. He's being investigated for complaining about it. That's how weaponized bureaucracy works.

    1. If I say your name three times, will you appear in front of me, brandishing decade-old surveys?

      1. Watch out, he's got that old man smell.

        1. Hey...when you are old, it is easy to fall in the shower.

      2. He'll beat you with rolled up copies of the Ron Paul newsletters.

      1. *studio audience applause*

  5. I've reached out to the professor, who did not respond to a request for comment.

    At least this time you actually provided closure, Froot Sooshi. Last time you did one these, "reach-arounds reach outs," you left us hanging, since the he was not, "immediately responsive."

    1. Reaching out to a professor is sexual assault, or at least a triggering micro-aggresssion, which is even worse more problematic.

  6. Remember the University of Tennessee student who received a zero on a quiz because he filled in a random name for his lab instructor?


    Well, he's now being investigated for sexual harassment.

    Get out of town!

  7. Let's hope UT does NOT realize how absurd this is. I hope they find him guilty so he can sue the living hell out of them. The only way at this point we are going restrain these ridiculous Title IX witch hunts is by suing the universities into oblivion.

  8. I wonder what kind of smut they would find on the professor's computer. That is if they could type anything onto the sticky keyboard.

  9. This reminds me of a PGA golfer who had some success back in the 00s. The poor bastard was named John Holmes. He had to go by J.B. Holmes.

    1. Why would that be a bad thing? Setting up false expectations?

      1. Porn actor is only respectable if you are a woman. Male porn stars still are held in lower esteem than tranny hookers.

        1. Ron Jeremy seems to have figured out how to parlay it into a nice D-list career.

          1. tranny hookers are C-list, I think, is his point.

      2. Are you suggesting he might have had a problem with the short strokes or couldn't get it in the hole?

        1. dirty balls.

          just grass stains like you wouldn't believe.

    2. Now thatcI think about it, this could be why my son has been asking to change his name from "Ronald Jeremy" to "Robert Plant."

  10. I looked her up and couldn't find anything to suggest she did porn. Seems like a lingerie model to me.

    1. Isn't porn actress a half way respectable profession these days? It is not 1954 anymore.

      1. A lingerie model is practically a Sunday school teacher, these days.

        1. There is very little money in porn these days because so many people are willing to upload their sex tapes to the internet for free. The golden age of porn ended with the rise of high speed internet.

          1. Golden age of liposuction and fakies?

            1. I mean the golden age for the people who made it. It was when they were making money.

          2. Baloney. The early 2000s were the most profitable years for porn in history.

            While some people are willing to accept fat, ugly amateur porn, if you want quality you have to pay for it (or steal it).

            1. if you want quality you have to pay for it

              I see someone is unfamiliar with pornhub.

          3. There is tons of money in porn, but it's probably a superstar economy with most of the gains accruing to a few of the most successful production companies, directors, and actors.

            1. there ARE tons.......

          4. But the Golden Showers of porn keep raining down

    2. Ditto. The fact that they professor knows the name of some run-of-the-mill lingerie model is much more disturbing than the student writing her name on a piece of paper. The professor should be investigated as a stalker.

      1. Exactly. I admit to a fair bit of knowledge of, um, adult actresses, and I've never heard that name.

      2. He should be investigated for being an asshole.

        1. Agreed. I'd put money on it that he googled every name his students wrote just looking for one to pop up with something. Sarah Jackson ranked something like 11,000th on freeones.com, so does that mean there are at least 10,999 other offensive names? Just wow

      3. The (female) lab assistant was the one who recognized the name, not the professor. The professor just reiterated her story.

        1. "Recognized" I call bullshit. She googled every name just looking for something to scrap at

      4. My guess is the lab instructor saw the name, wondered how the student came up with it, and Google'd it.

    3. Look her up on FreeOnes dot com. (NSFW obviously)

  11. That's what he gets for complaining. He should have taken his professor's zero without making a sound.

  12. Professor is upset and embarrassed that he outed himself about knowing the name of some nobody porn actress cause he's aggressively strangling his slab o' salami on the daily so he weaponized Title IX for his own use. And we all know porn is icky to the shrieking feminist types. This is long con team signalling and butt coverage.


  13. Hello and welcome to last week.

    1. Sup? Whatchu doing Friday night?

  14. How did they even know of the existence of the porn model?

  15. I just saw a bit on The Today Show about these Title IX witch hunts and it was portrayed in a very unflattering light yet there was no mention whatsoever of Obumbles being responsible for it. He personally directed the DOE to reinterpret Title IX in such a way to change the standards from 'beyond a reasonable doubt' to ' preponderance of evidence'. This is Obumbles directly assaulting the rule of law.

    1. Of course there wasn't. These things just happen. How was Obama supposed to know? You act like he was in charge or something. Give it a couple of years and I swear the media will be claiming George W. Bush was president for four terms and Obama never happened.

      1. Dollars to donuts the office that is investigating had the same policy about investigating complaints under the Bush administration, probably Clinton too.

        They did not initiate this thing, the geology department head did.

        1. Says the idiot shill who is completely unfamiliar with the "Dear Colleague" letter that started all of this.

          Fuck off, Bo.

    2. I don't think this case has anything to do with the DOE guidelines. This is probably a SJW teaching assistant and a terrified professor.

      1. Nah. When Obumbles insisted on changing the standards it was widely reported and there were numerous warning that it would come to this. Once again the 'foreseeable consequences are not unintended' law applies, yet all the warnings and controversy are memory holed. Because Obumbles.

        1. "At the crux of the controversy is changes to how universities adjudicate sexual-assault claims ? spurred by a 2011 "Dear Colleague" letter from the Office for Civil Rights which told campus officials to make it much easier for campus complainants to prove a Title IX violation with a mere "preponderance of the evidence" standard.

          It came as the Obama administration made Title IX enforcement a priority.

          But "the requirement that such proceedings follow the 'preponderance' standard does not exist in the law," wrote Jacob Gersen, a professor at Harvard Law School, in The Wall Street Journal this week.

          "Although the letter is allegedly nonbinding, the Education Department has used it as leverage," he added. "College presidents, faced with an announcement that their school is being investigated, a potential loss of federal funds, and a public-relations nightmare of being seen as soft on sexual assault, have declined even to challenge the overreach, much less to sue the government for acting unlawfully. ? This kind of policy-making process?or, rather, policy-making without process?is unlawful and wrong."


          100% Obumbles. He did this, and did it deliberately. Fuckin' snake in the grass.

    3. there was no mention whatsoever of Obumbles being responsible for it

      Of course not, these things just happen in a vacuum. You can't expect to hold the head of the Executive Branch responsible for what the Executive Branch does. I don't know where the buck stops, but it's not with him. /sarc

      1. Was it in the newspaper ? No ? Well then how would Obama know about it ?

        1. his teleprompter?

    4. Of course keep in mind that the next time a 'mattress girl' makes a stink, the Today Show is going to be drooling all over itself promoting the chick everywhere and anywhere and screaming 'rape culture'. The unflattering light thing is a trap.

  16. The fucking department head filed the sexual harrassment claim. Apparently the student's appeal of the grade isn't going to go well.

  17. OK, very busy the next two days.... I'll just leave this for those of you who deserve this.

    *narrows gaze*

  18. I find you giulty of investigation!

  19. If I were this guy, id be seeing dollar signs.

    Pick a nice building to rename, youre about to own the school

    1. "The Sarah Jackson Hot Lunch Cafeteria"

      1. Cold pizza...hot babes.

        1. let's not get ahead of ourselves. the kid's renaming it, not reorganizing it into a new franchise.

  20. On the bright side, if they do find him guilty and kick him out of school, he should be able to sue the fuck out of them with even a minimally competent attorney. Then, in the very near future, the University of Tennessee will be renamed "Keaton Wahlbon's Bitchin' Party Palace."

  21. given the ease with which professors can find themselves the targets of prolonged Title IX investigations for what they say or write, even when the claims against them are baseless

    Like a geology professor is supposed to know anything about history and the habit of revolutionaries eating their own, of treating apostasy as a mortal sin far worse than the mere crime of heresy? They know their conscience is clear and they're on the right side of this argument, they've done nothing wrong and have nothing to fear. Surely the approaching tumbrel isn't meant for them, that would be a simple case of mistaken identity cleared up in a trice.

    1. Crucifixion ? Good. Line on the left, one cross each.

  22. By that professor's logic, the name Jane Doe would have been offensive.

    1. Women are deer now? Bambi?! THEY SHOT BAMBI'S MOTHER.


  23. He should have grabbed her by the pussy.

    1. He should have put the pussy on the chainwax!

      1. Grab its motherfucking pussy.

  24. This is one of the stupidest things I have ever heard. No doubt about it


    Can we stop pretending this was a random accident? That kid knew exactly what he was doing, using a porn stars' name for the TA.

    HAVING SAID THAT, it doesn't make a damn bit of difference. She doesn't like it? Tough shit, that's life.

    But let's not be leftists here; this was no accident.

    1. Is there literally ANY reason to think this? I genuinely don't know.

      1. No. Sarah Jackson is just a name. It's not a porn name. Porn names are names like Peter North, Bobbi Star, Dick Ramsey, Asia Carerra, and Tiffani Jugsworth.

        "Sarah Jackson" isn't even in Ben Dover or Mike Hunt or skankhunt42 territory. If "Sarah Jackson" is an easily identifiable porn name, so is Chelsea Clinton.

  25. Welcome to your liberal utopia where you will sit down and shut the fuck up and do what we tell you to do because we are smarter than you.

  26. "Keaton Wahlbon"

    Are you sure that's not another made-up, harassing name?

    1. He grew up on the same street as Haven Monahan.

  27. "Officer, there must be some misunderstanding, I simply ordered the Won Ton soup"

    "You're just making it worse for yourself, harasser!"

  28. Meanwhile, Michael Rotch is asking people not to use his nickname.

  29. For me, the strangest part of this story (farce?) is that, as I recall, the name of the lab instructor for my college chem class was Jenna Jameson. Ms. Jameson was a grad student working as a TA (or was it TnA?) under my chem professor -- Prof. Peter North.

    1. Well, I'm too mature to link to any of those "sexy lab assistant" pictures they have on Google Images.

  30. Now I know my pornography about as much as Hank Hill. I've never heard of a Sarah Jackson. And it seems to be that the more popular return on google is indeed, well, a lingerie model and not a porn star (NTTIAWWT). DRTFA, but as other pointed, this, to me, seems more like a case where the TA was pissed about no one or that one kid not remembering her name (and btw, why would that be on a quiz? What does the name of a graduate students has to do with what you are actually teaching?) and acting full borderline about a kid forgetting her name (i.e. trying to find offense where there is none). That or the teacher wants to bang her.

    And googling that name, I found on the first page about 10 women called Sarah Jackson, 3 were in porn or lingerie. Can we know which one he was referring to?

  31. Perhaps the lab instructor looks very much like the model. That would explain how she knows who the model is, and perhaps the class noticed this too. I'm going to need some full body shots of the parties involved to get to the bottom of this myself, since no one does real journalism anymore.

    1. maybe that lab rat IS the same one... moonlighting to boost her income. You know TA's don't get paid much. But with a "tude like hers, she's likely to not even get liked much......

  32. What kind of instruction is "make something good up"? If the name is important, then what good would a false/incorrect and made up one be? If it's not important, why is the question there at all? Why the assumption that someone wouldn't know the name? What if it had been left blank? What does "good" add to the instruction to simply "make something up"?

    Based on the info presented here, if this If this was in script or short story, I'd find it lazy and not thought through, like someone was trying to do a spoof, but not trying hard enough.

  33. Future history books will refer to this as the Title IX Inquisition.

  34. A whole bunch of women named Sarah Jackson should go to the U of T with signs saying "My Name is Sarah Jackson. I am NOT a porn star."

  35. While coming to education, the technology has brought many advantages to students and as well as teachers. showbox For example, students can do their homework or assignment with ease and can complete it faster by using the Internet.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.