Michigan State-Michigan football tunnel fight yields punishment from Big Ten, Tom Izzo ‘completely upset’
The Big Ten Conference announced punishments in the Michigan State-Michigan fracas that occurred late last month, but the discipline didn’t sit well with Spartans men’s basketball coach Tom Izzo.
Michigan State cornerback Khary Crump, who is facing a felony charge, was suspended for the first eight games of the 2023 and four games from the Oct. 29 incident date. The conference said the other suspensions handed down to the other participants in the melee were sufficient and completed. The school was also fined $100,000.
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The conference reprimanded Michigan for failing to meet the standards of the game management manual policy, which “requires the conference member institution game host to provide adequate protection for personnel of both home and visiting teams when entering and leaving playing arenas.”
“The Big Ten Conference has a standard of excellence both academically and athletically that has been built over 127 years,” Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren said in a statement. “Our standards require that our student-athletes, coaches and staff members represent the conference, and their member institutions, with the highest level of decorum and sportsmanship. We are taking disciplinary action and will continue to work with our member institutions to strengthen their gameday procedures and ensure our honored traditions.”
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Izzo, who has been coaching the men’s basketball team since 1995, took issue with the punishments, though he said he doesn’t defend the players who took part in the incident.
“I’m completely upset about it,” Izzo said, via MLive.com. “I think to get a $100,00 fine, a suspension of a player is fine but to get a fine like that and then the other school gets reprimanded. What the hell does reprimanded mean? I’ve told you guys I’m completely upset by what our players did, as Mel (Tucker) was. I would think that administratively, they should be upset on how the tunnel was handled and how those players ran in there.”
Izzo criticized Michigan’s tunnel management, which had come under fire previously against Penn State this year and Ohio State last year.
“It really disgusts me too that it wasn’t handled on the front end since they had a problem with Ohio State a year ago, Penn State this year, and then we get a $100,000 fine and there’s a reprimand,” Izzo said. “Well what the hell does a reprimand mean? What does it stand for?”
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Crump was charged with one count of felonious assault, while Itayvion “Tank” Brown, Angelo Grose, Justin White, Brandon Wright, and Zion Young were each charged with one count of aggravated assault, a misdemeanor. Jacoby Windmon was charged with the misdemeanor of assault and battery.