Maybe James Franklin was right?
By now, most (if not all) of you have heard about what happened in the Michigan Stadium tunnel on Saturday night after the game. I’m sure most have also seen the video of what happened. But if not, please see below.
Late Sunday night, Michigan State released a statement saying four players had been suspended indefinitely. They noted that they are still investigating the incident and that further punishment may happen.
Also announced on Sunday was that the Big Ten along with both university policy departments are investigating the incident. I think it’s a little heavy for the police to be involved, but whatever. In this day and age, I wouldn’t be shocked if someone pressed charges or filed a lawsuit.
But with the conference investigation, I’m sure punishments will be handed down this week after a long discussion. Even though the school announced the players had been suspended indefinitely, whatever that means, that’s not enough.
The minimum penalty for any player involved in the altercation should be suspended for the rest of the season. I think it’d be appropriate for all of them to be kicked off the team as well, but I can understand why some may find that extreme.
Michigan State’s Punishment
But none of these players should play another down the rest of the season. Period.
And that includes a bowl game. If Michigan State makes one.
These guys literally ganged up and beat down a player on the other team. He allegedly has a broken nose. The extent of his injuries should play no factor into the punishment.
Jumping a player in the tunnel goes beyond spiking a spear in the logo, putting your team’s helmet on Paul Bunyan or calling the other team little brother.
This is serious. Several people on one team physically assaulted one player on the other. That should not happen. Ever.
Mel Tucker Should be Punished too
I’m curious to see if the Big Ten hands down a punishment for head coach Mel Tucker as well. Tuck being suspended for a game would be appropriate as well. He’s the leader of these young men. Their actions are his responsibility as well.
Again, this wasn’t one player fighting someone. This was a group of several of his players punching and kicking a lone opponent. Tucker should be held accountable as well.
In one of the videos, a police officer is seen behind the group of Spartans and tried to reel in a couple of them. Some people have criticized him for his lack thereof approach to breaking up the fight.
Ear muffs kids.
What the hell do you expect him to do when he’s got eight elite athletes, padded up, and on an adrenaline rush in a rage. Do you really expect him to try cuffing these guys? They are all bigger than him. They have should pads, helmets, cleats on.
This was a no-win situation for that officer. Let’s cut the guy some slack.
Lastly, I enjoy watching James Franklin make a fool of himself just as much as you do. But now we’ve had two instances within a month of each other where Michigan and the visitors got into it in the tunnel.
I’m not saying he was right about making changes to Michigan’s tunnel or the protocols of how the teams get to and from their locker rooms. But if this shit happens again, I’ll start to believe he wasn’t wrong, either.
Photo Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports