EAST LANSING, Mich. - Michigan State football coach Mark Dantonio, on Friday, denied accusations made by ESPN about how the football program handled sexual assault cases.
Dantonio read a prepared statement to reporters after ESPN's Outside the Lines published a report detailing new information about what they called "a culture of sexual assault" inside the men's basketball and football programs.
"I’m here tonight to say that any accusations of my handling of any complaints of sexual assault individually are completely false. Every incident reported in that article was documented by either police or with Michigan State’s Title IX office," he said.
He said that he has worked with authorities when dealing with cases of sexual assault. Dantonio also took a few questions from reporters and said that he would not be resigning.
Basketball coach Tom Izzo also spoke to the media Friday. He briefly mentioned the ESPN report, but stuck mostly to discussing the basketball game.
"As far as the reports today, we will cooperate with any investigation going forward, as we always do," Izzo said. "That's about all I have to say."
Below is Dantonio's full statement.
"During this extremely difficult and challenging time for our community, I would first like to express our deepest sympathies and my deepest sympathies to the courageous survivors of Larry Nassar’s abuse. It’s absolutely heartbreaking to hear their stories and the pain and suffering they went through, and we are only in the beginning of the stages of the healing process for the community, and even more importantly, for the survivors and their families. I have received many questions and inquiries about the day’s reports, the latest reports. I’m here tonight to say that any accusations of my handling of any complaints of sexual assault individually are completely false. Every incident reported in that article was documented by either police or with Michigan State’s Title IX office. I’ve always worked with the proper authorities when dealing with the cases of sexual assault. We have always had high standards in this program and that will never change. The values that we teach to everyone in this program will be enforced. We’ve also always tackled problems here head-on and have dealt with issues. When we find out about the problems, it has come from the police or university authorities. I can assure you as in last year’s incidents, I also immediately reported them to the proper authorities."
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