Friday, February 28, 2020

BREAKING: Michigan State linebacker Joe Bachie declared ineligible by Big Ten for failed drug test

October 31, 2019
Sophomore linebacker Joe Bachie (35) returns a loose ball during the game against Penn State, on Nov. 4, 2017, at Spartan Stadium. The Spartans defeated the Nittany Lions, 27-24.
Sophomore linebacker Joe Bachie (35) returns a loose ball during the game against Penn State, on Nov. 4, 2017, at Spartan Stadium. The Spartans defeated the Nittany Lions, 27-24. —
Photo by Matt Schmucker | The State News

Michigan State linebacker Joe Bachie has been declared ineligible by the Big Ten Conference. In a random drug test, Bachie tested positive for a random supplement that is classified as a performance-enhancing substance banned by the conference, according to the university.

Michigan State plans to file an appeal immediately.

“Joe Bachie has built himself into an All-Big Ten middle linebacker and two-time team captain through his incredible work ethic and leadership skills," coach Mark Dantonio said in a statement Thursday afternoon.

"This situation breaks my heart, but I know Joe is resilient and accountable. No one feels worse than Joe does, a sentiment he expressed when he spoke to the team earlier today. This does not define Joe as a player, and more importantly, as a man. He will graduate in December and has a very bright future ahead of him, both on and off the field. As a program, we plan to appeal immediately, and will continue to support Joe however we can. He will forever be a Spartan.”

Bachie, a senior team captain from Brook Park, Ohio is in his third season as Michigan State's starting middle linebacker. He is one of only six players in the Dantonio era to be named captain for multiple seasons.

“All my career I’ve done my very best to represent Michigan State in a positive manner on and off the field," Bachie said in a statement sent to media Thursday afternoon. "I plan to appeal, but to all of those affected, from my coaches to my teammates and to the fans, I apologize for putting them through this situation. I will always be a Spartan.”

In his Michigan State career, Bachie has collected 285 career tackles, he has had 36 solo tackles this season. He added 3.5 sacks this year as well as one interception in the Spartan's 31-10 win over Northwestern on Sept. 21.

Bachie's likely replacement at middle linebacker would be sophomore Noah Harvey, who has recorded seven tackles in six games this season.

The Spartans (4-4, 2-3 Big Ten) are off this week before hosting Illinois on Nov. 9 (3:30 p.m., FS1).

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