Thursday, February 2, 2023

Tom Izzo "completely upset" about Big Ten’s punishment regarding tunnel incident

November 28, 2022
<p>Spartan Men&#x27;s Basketball coach Tom Izzo speaks of the upcoming basketball season during the media day on Oct. 10, 2022.</p>

Spartan Men's Basketball coach Tom Izzo speaks of the upcoming basketball season during the media day on Oct. 10, 2022.

Photo by Olivia Hans | The State News

During media availability Tuesday afternoon, Michigan State men's basketball Head Coach Tom Izzo voiced his strong displeasure with the punishment handed out by the Big Ten as a result of the incident in the player's tunnel at Michigan Stadium.

“I’m completely upset about it,” Izzo said. “The suspension of a player is fine, but to get a fine like that and the other school gets reprimanded - what the hell does reprimanded mean?”

However, Izzo made it clear he did not condone the actions of the Spartans that participated in the incident. 

“I don’t condone anything our student athletes did wrong, and there were some things that were done wrong," Izzo said.

Earlier in the day, the Big Ten made official the punishment for the incident that occurred in the player’s tunnel following the Michigan-Michigan State game on Oct. 29. Redshirt sophomore cornerback Khary Crump, the lone player charged with a felonious assault, will be suspended for the first eight games of the 2023 season, while the rest of the players will not have to miss any additional games after serving four-game suspensions from the team. In addition to the suspension, Michigan State was fined $100,000. 

“It disgusts me that it happened,” Izzo said. “But it really disgusts me too that it wasn’t handled better on the front end, since they had a problem with Ohio State a year ago, Penn State this year.”

Michigan's sole punishment for the incident was a reprimand for its administration of the player’s tunnel. 

“I don’t know if anyone should’ve been fined,” Izzo said. “I think it should be a lot more equal, like the other one at Spartan Stadium should’ve been.”

The incident referenced by Izzo occurred back in 2018 during the Mark Dantonio era. An altercation occurred between Michigan's Devin Bush Jr. and members of Michigan State after the Spartans did their routine, arm-linked walk across the field before pre-game warmups. 

Bush responded to the altercation by heading to the middle of the field and kicking up chunks of grass from the Spartan head. 

In the wake of the incident, Michigan State received a $10,000 fine, while Michigan Head Coach Jim Harbaugh and Bush were reprimanded. 

“It doesn’t surprise me, I’ve been here a lot of years,” Izzo said. “Watched it happen to Dantonio, when they went after our Spartan head.”

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