MSU interim president calls ESPN OTL report a 'sensationalized package'

Michele Moreno
February 16, 2018

Of the 65 members of the Faculty Senate at the meeting, 61 voted for the measure.

Interim President John Engler made a decision to fire Dr. Strampel in his first major personnel action since temporarily taking the helm at MSU. He said this vote isn't about Engler being a Republican, rather the board hasn't listened to the faculty, especially their request that the interim president not be a political person.

"We make a pledge to our faculties and the citizens of MI and beyond to work together in this shared vision, and harness our great strengths in delivery of cutting-edge health care to prevent and treat illness in a manner that has never before been attempted-but can be, given the foundations now present at our university", College of Osteopathic Medicine Interim Dean Andrea Amalfitano said.

Inside the International Center on MSU's campus, students and faculty voiced their frustrations with the Board of Trustees. But numerous victims say they reported the abuse to MSU, which failed to act. President Lou Anna Simon stepped down, while athletic director Mark Hollis retired. It was part of a letter Engler wrote to the MSU community.

No trustees have resigned in the wake of the scandal, but two of them: Chairman Brian Breslin and Mitch Lyons have said they don't plan to run for re-election when their terms expire. The board even stood by Simon after an unprecedented, though non-binding, vote of "no confidence" by the Michigan House of Representatives.

Additionally, an ESPN "Outside the Lines" report alleged that MSU head football coach Mark Dantonio and Tom Izzo mishandled and covered up sexual assault allegations within their programs.

Engler's letter also called a recent investigative report from ESPN's Outside the Lines regarding Michigan State's response to sexual assault "a sensationalized package of reporting".

"That has been a burden that must be lifted", Engler said in his letter.

Izzo, who has declined to comment about the report, was asked after Tuesday night's game at Minnesota about Engler's comments but said he only saw a small portion of the letter. "We'll see what goes from there when I get home and get a chance to read it all and get a chance to talk to him".

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