Ann Arbor, Mich. (AP) — Seven Michigan State football players have been charged for their actions during a postgame brawl in the Michigan Stadium tunnel. last month, according to a statement released Wednesday from the Washtenaw County District Attorney’s Office.
The most serious charge is against linebacker Khary Crump, who faces one felony charge. The other six are charged with misdemeanours. Linebacker Itayvion “Tank” Brown, safety Angelo Grose, cornerback Justin White, defensive end Brandon Wright and defensive end Zion Young are each charged with one dose of aggravated assault, and linebacker Jacoby Windmon is charged with assault and battery.
No Michigan player faces charges announced prior to the two teams’ final regular season games. No. 3 Michigan plays rival No. 2 Ohio State on the road Saturday with the Big Ten East Division title on the line. A few hours later, the Spartans finished the season at No. 11 Penn State, needing a win to become tournament eligible.
The altercations broke out in the Michigan Stadium tunnel on October 29 after the Wolverines defeated the Spartans 29-7. Social media posts showed Michigan State players shoving, hitting, and kicking Michigan’s Jaden McBurrows in and near a corridor that did not lead to either locker room. Brown, Gross, and Young are seen on video making out with the McBurrows.
McBurrows and defensive back Gemon Green climbed into the tunnel, walking side by side with the Spartans, after the game while much of Michigan waved the Spartans off the field after beating their in-state rivals for the first time in three years.
Green, in another post, is seen surrounded by police as he yells through the tunnel at Michigan State players.
Crump in one video He appears to be swinging his helmet at a Michigan player. This could be the most serious charge, which carries a maximum penalty of four years in prison. State law describes criminal assault as an attack “with a knife, iron bar, club, brass knuckles, or other dangerous weapon without intent to commit murder or great bodily harm.”
Conviction to misdemeanor assault carries a penalty of up to one year in prison, while misdemeanor battery carries a penalty of up to 93 days behind bars.
One player, whom he did not identify, may have suffered a broken nose, Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh said. He also said that Green was punched by a Spartans player and McBurrows was attacked when he tried to help.
The State Attorney’s Office statement did not provide any details of the allegations, including who was accused of beating whom. She added that the office would have no further comment while the case was in progress. It was not clear when the players charged in preliminary matches would appear in court.
The Michigan State athletic director and head football coach did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Michigan President Santa J. Uno said Wednesday in a statement that the school appreciates the “thoughtful and thoughtful approach from the Washtenaw County District Attorney’s Office to this unfortunate incident.”
“We also want to express our concern to all the players involved, especially those who have been injured,” Ono said. “The University of Michigan will continue to fully cooperate with any additional reviews of this matter.”
Tom Mars, the attorney representing Green, said after the charges were filed that he was “not at all surprised by the attorney general’s decision.”
Asked if his client might file a lawsuit over the altercation, Mars said that after consulting with Green and his father, they agreed with his recommendation that “no action be taken about the tunnel incident until the season is over.”
“I don’t want any of this to be a distraction to Michigan football and neither does Jemon,” Mars said.
Michigan State coach Mel Tucker has suspended eight players — including Malcolm Jones, who has not been charged — for their roles in the altercation.
After the October 29 incident, then-President of Michigan Samuel Stanley publicly apologized for the “violent” skirmish. His departure was not related to the fight in Ann Arbor last month.
“I am deeply saddened by this incident and the unacceptable behavior portrayed by members of our football program,” Stanley said in a statement at the time. “On behalf of Michigan State University, I sincerely apologize to the University of Michigan and the student-athletes who were injured.”
After the charges were announced on Wednesday, Michigan’s interim president, Teresa K. Woodruff released a statement saying the school “will continue to evaluate this matter and cooperate with any investigative reviews.”
“While we do not condone the actions some football players took on October 29, we will support our student-athletes through this process,” she said. “MSU strongly believes in restorative justice practices and education about harmful procedures.”
She added that universities “must make our own environments safe places to compete.” It said it was committed to making “meaningful changes” towards that end and would report back by the end of the year. Woodruff did not explain what these changes might be.
Tarm reported from Chicago.
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