Yesterday afternoon Dallin Oaks telephoned and said that he had in his office at the same time Bob Thomas, his academic vice president, and Frank Fox, a young professor of history. We conducted a 20-30 minute conversation over the telephone. In essence Dallin was asking the three of us to serve as a committee to read and critique the portions of the BYU history that deal with the [Ernest L.] Wilkinson and Oaks administrations. The thought was that we were an objective third party group and would be able to assure balance and objective treatment of those administrations. This would protect Ernest Wilkinson and Dallin. This suggestion had been approved by Neal Maxwell-in fact, urged by him. It had been accepted by Ernest Wilkinson with three stipulations: (1) That we accept the view that this is the Lord's church and that BYU is the Lord's university; (2) That we are willing to make a statement for the introduction of volumes two and three that we have read the material and approved it; (3) That we submit to Ernest all of our suggestions so he [would have] had a chance to negotiate with us on any that he disapproves of; (4) We are not to tell anybody that we are doing this.
I accepted the assignment as did the other brethren ...
[Confessions of a Mormon historian : the diaries of Leonard J. Arrington, 1971-1997, Gary James Bergera, editor, Signature Books, 2018]