On Sunday, Michigan State coach Tom Izzo walked back his comments from two days earlier regarding the Larry Nassar scandal, saying he used the “wrong words” to describe the former Spartans and USA Gymnastics physician who has been accused by more than 100 women of sexual misconduct. Izzo initially said he hoped the “right person was convicted,” after Michigan State’s 85-57 win over Indiana on Friday, a statement that’s been ripped by many, including the mother of former U.S. gymnast Aly Raisman, who said Nassar “inappropriately” touched her.
“On Friday night in my postgame press conference, I used the wrong words when trying to express my belief that Larry Nassar and anyone else who broke the law should be held accountable for their crimes. My overall message was, and remains, that I have tremendous admiration for the courage the survivors have shown, and that Larry Nassar has permanently damaged the lives of so many people and deserves all the punishment that he receives,” Izzo said in a statement.
According to a Thursday report from the Detroit News, 14 Michigan State officials were aware of Nassar’s behavior in the two decades prior to his arrest. After the Michigan State Board of Trustees called president Lou Anna K. Simon the “right leader” for the university, MSU trustee Mitch Lyons called for Simon to resign. Izzo also said Friday he has the “the utmost faith and respect in the leadership of our president.”