Michigan State football player sues over ongoing suspension

FILE Tulsa Michigan St Football
Posted at 5:41 PM, Oct 11, 2021

EAST LANSING, Mich. (AP) — A Michigan State University football player has filed a lawsuit alleging the school was wrong to suspend him from the team indefinitely while investigating sexual assault allegations against him from January.

The federal lawsuit filed Friday identifies the sophomore only as John Doe. It alleges Michigan State has been unresponsive to his demands for reinstatement while the school’s investigation and grievance process under federal Title IX rules are completed, the Lansing State Journal reported.

The suit alleges that the university breached its contractual obligations to the player, who is on a full scholarship, and that it discriminated against him because of his gender.

Michigan State spokesman Dan Olsen said the university does not comment on pending litigation.

The university’s investigation began after a female student alleged two Michigan State football players sexually assaulted her in January, according to the suit. The player suing the university said the sexual encounter was consensual.

The player reported the allegation to a football coaching staff member a few days later after he was questioned by police, the suit said. Coach Mel Tucker soon suspended him from practice and all team activities.

The State Journal reported that it requested documents involving the alleged assault from university police and local prosecutors, but those requests were denied on grounds that the matter remained under investigation.