Vice President Joe Biden on Monday told a group of about 100 university presidents that they have to help change the culture when it comes to curbing sexual assault against women on college campuses.

"I usually don't talk to presidents this way," Biden said during a conference call with the university presidents Monday afternoon. "But you've got to know, you can't pretend that you don't know" about the rape and assault statistics on individual college campuses.

"Your actions matter, your leadership matters," he told them.

The vice president urged the officials to conduct surveys of sexual violence on their campuses, and pointed to a provision of the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act, which Biden authored in the Senate. That law calls on colleges around the country to publish grievance procedures for victims of violence.

"I'm calling about the need for there to be a climate change and cultural change on our campuses ... which makes it clear very early on that sex without consent will simply not be tolerated on any campus in America," he said. "It starts from the university president on down."

Biden was participating in the call as part of a program called "It's on US," a campaign to engage college students, and members of campus communities to help prevent sexual assault.

The plea from Biden comes nearly two months after he joined the public outcry in response to a Stanford rape case and wrote an open letter to the survivor, praising her courage for speaking publicly against her attacker and decrying how she was treated by the justice system.

In May, Baylor University President Kenneth Starr was demoted to chair of a constitutional law center amid an ongoing sexual assault scandal revolving around the school's athletic department. Starr was the independent counsel who investigated President Bill Clinton's sexual relationship with Monica Lewinsky.

After an investigation, Baylor's Board of Regents in a statement said it was "horrified" by the extent of "these acts of sexual violence on our campus."