Ohio State Sports Doc Molested Thousands. Keep Rep. Jim Jordan OUT OF IT!
Holy Trigger Warning, Batman! NBC just dropped a story on a molesting sports doctor at Ohio State University, and it is HORRIFYING.
"[Team Doctor Richard] Strauss sexually assaulted male athletes in at least fifteen varsity sports during his employment at OSU from 1978 through 1998," [former wrestler Michael] DiSabato wrote in a June 26 email to Kathleen M. Trafford of Porter Wright Morris & Arthur, the Columbus-based law firm that represents Ohio State. "Athlete victims include members of the following programs: football, basketball, wrestling, swimming, cheerleading, volleyball, lacrosse, gymnastics, ice hockey, soccer, baseball, tennis, track and cross country."
Chillingly, DiSabato added: "Based on testimony from victim athletes from each of the aforementioned varsity sports, we estimate that Strauss sexually assaulted and/or raped a minimum of 1,500/2,000 athletes at OSU from 1978 through 1998."
(Strauss committed suicide in 2005.)
As people who grew up back then, we can confirm there was a lot of VERY BAD SHIT that just seemed like background noise at the time. We are so sorry for these men and the millions of other kids just like them. You were sexually assaulted, and the adults around you laughed it off as "just one of those things." We can't undo the past, but we can do better by our own kids. And we can hold accountable those people who looked the other way.
Rep. Jim Jordan, the powerful Republican congressman from Ohio, is being accused by former wrestlers he coached more than two decades ago at Ohio State University of failing to stop the team doctor from molesting them and other students. [...]
Jordan, who was assistant wrestling coach at the university from 1986 to 1994, has repeatedly said he knew nothing of the abuse until former students began speaking out this spring. His denials, however, have been met with skepticism and anger from some former members of the wrestling team.
Three former wrestlers told NBC News that it was common knowledge that Strauss showered regularly with the students and inappropriately touched them during appointments, and said it would have been impossible for Jordan to be unaware; one wrestler said he told Jordan directly about the abuse.
What is it with these Republican wrestling coaches? JFC!
Rep. Jordan insists he knew nothing of about Strauss's assaults on the young men he coached. But multiple former wrestlers tell a different story.
Dunyasha Yetts, who wrestled at Ohio State in 1993 and 1994, said he and others told Jordan about Strauss.
"I remember I had a thumb injury and went into Strauss' office and he started pulling down my wrestling shorts," he said. "I'm like, what the f--- are you doing? And I went out and told [head coach] Russ [Hellickson] and Jim what happened. I was not having it. They went in and talked to Strauss."
Yetts said he and his teammates talked to Jordan numerous times about Strauss.
"For God's sake, Strauss's locker was right next to Jordan's and Jordan even said he'd kill him if he tried anything with him," Yetts said.
Head Coach Russ Hellickson has acknowledged Strauss's inappropriate behavior -- "His response was, 'Coach, you shower with your guys all the time.' And I said, 'Not for an hour, Doc.'" -- but Jordan swears that he never heard a word of it in the eight years he worked with Hellickson?
"I considered Jim Jordan a friend," DiSabato said. "But at the end of the day, he is absolutely lying if he says he doesn't know what was going on."
DiSabato said he reached out to Jordan this year, before going to the university, to tell Jordan that he planned to go public with his allegations. Jordan told him to "please leave me out of it," DiSabato said. "He asked me not to get him involved."
Seems the guy who spends all his time playing the righteous avenger ferreting out imagined wrongdoing at the FBI was pretty goddamn quiet when the real young men in his care were being molested. But that bill may finally be coming due. Ohio State University has engaged law firm Perkins Coie to conduct an extensive investigation of abuse at the school, and 150 witnesses have already been interviewed. NBC's story will undoubtedly ratchet up pressure on Jordan to meet with the investigators.
We're not going to speculate here how the sexual assault scandal will affect the November election. These men's trauma isn't a political game. But clearly a person who looked the other way while thousands of young men were molested and then lied about it to save his own career does not belong in the United States Congress.
GET. THE. FUCK. OUT. NOW.
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Liz Dye lives in Baltimore with her wonderful husband and a houseful of teenagers. When she isn't being mad about a thing on the internet, she's hiding in plain sight in the carpool line. She's the one wearing yoga pants glaring at her phone.