Penn State police respond to minor altercation between MSU men's basketball players


Update, 3:45 p.m.: MSU basketball sports information director Matt Larson emailed members of the media a statement from head coach Tom Izzo regarding junior center Adreian Payne and sophomore guard Branden Dawson, who were named as being involved in this morning’s incident.

The statement reads as follows:

“A scuffle that began as two players needling each other resulted in a dented wall. We’ll deal with this appropriately, and the players will willingly accept responsibility for paying for any property damage. I’ve spent my entire afternoon meeting with the players involved and they are both sincerely remorseful. What makes matters even more confusing is that they are off-campus roommates. As a result of their actions neither one will start tonight’s game.”


The No. 18 MSU men’s basketball team (14-3 overall, 3-1 Big Ten) are scheduled to tip off against Penn State tonight at 7 p.m. on the Big Ten Network.

Two MSU basketball players were involved in what police believe to be an altercation this morning at a Penn State campus hotel.

Lisa Powers, director of public information for Penn State University, confirmed a report that police responded to an apparent fight between two players at the Nittany Lion Inn. The names of the involved players were not disclosed.

According to Penn State University police chief Tyrone Parham, campus police responded to an incident at the Nittany Lion Inn, a hotel he described as “our campus hotel.”

Parham said the police responded to a call placed a little after 11 a.m. and arrived at 11:11 a.m.

By that time the two players involved in the physical confrontation had been separated and the MSU men’s basketball team was on a bus preparing to head to Bryce Jordan Center.

Parham said a verbal altercation between two members of the basketball team turned physical with both players exchanging one punch each, followed by a shove from one player that sent the other into a wall.

Parham said both players had minor cuts on their faces and there was minimal damage to the wall.
The incident still is under investigation, police reports have yet to be written and charges have not been filed.

The identity of the two players are known by police, but department policy dictates names not be released unless charges are filed.

Parham said he had “no idea” if charges would be filed and that police will “continue determining all the facts and … identify other witnesses and determine if charges are appropriate.”

“Some of this is going to depend on what they want to happen and have as a resolution,” Parham said. “It’s hard to say what is typical because a lot of this is victim driven and what the parties involved want to happen.”

MSU athletics director Mark Hollis said he had no comment regarding the incident and MSU basketball sports information director Matt Larson did not immediately return a call for comment.

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