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"You had to decide whether or not you wanted to get molested"

The University of Michigan, its storied football program, and legendary former football coach, Glenn "Bo" Schembechler, are all back under the spotlight this week, after two former players came forward in an exclusive interview with Fox News to detail sexual abuse at the hands of longtime Michigan athletic department physician, Dr. Robert E. Anderson.

Dan Kwiatkowski, who was a top high school prospect in the state of Michigan and played for the Wolverines from 1977 to 1981 said he was "severely" abused while on campus, beginning with his Freshman year physical, which was performed by Dr. Anderson, who died in 2008 and never faced criminal charges.

"[Schembechler] came to my house to meet my parents, met my parents. And during that conversation, he promised my parents that I would have an education, that they would send home a better son than that they gave him, and that he would take care of all my medical responsibilities," explained Kwiatkowski of the recruiting process with Schembechler.

"So then I went on to, to Michigan, and I was abused in my freshman physical," said Kwiatkowski.

Anderson’s behavior was well-known, according to Kwiatkowski, which he said often forced young students, many not yet adults, into a horrifying choice: visit Anderson for treatment and potentially face another assault or go without medical care.

"We talked about it in the locker rooms. We talked about it at the bar, we talked about it. If you had a cold, let's say and you had to go see Dr. Anderson, you had to decide whether or not you wanted to get molested to get the cold medicine," explained Kwiatkowski.

"You had to make some really tough decisions as a 17-year-old student. You have to remember we were 17 years old at this time and we were confronted with all types of different situations" said Kwiatkowski.

Another football player Gilvanni Johnson, who played wide receiver for the Maize and Blue from 1982 to 1985, simply responded, "yes, I was." when asked by Fox News if he was abused by Anderson.

"It was either a cold, or I got injured in a game, and I went in and I told Bo that, you know, that I had an anal exam that I didn't think should have took place," explained Johnson, who was recruited as a two-sport athlete by Michigan.

Johnson, who resides just over an hour west of Ann Arbor in Macomb County said coaches often threatened players with physicals from Anderson for poor on-the-field performance.

"The coaches, they were joking around in regards to, you know, 'we're gonna send you to [the] doctor,' you know, if you don't pick it up, or not doing what you're supposed to do, not hustling and stuff like that. It was, it was joking. It occurred all the time in regards to that."

Both players also say they alerted former coach Bo Schembechler about Anderson’s conduct.

Kwiatkowski says he was even told by the coaching legend to "toughen up."

"I went up to Bo after practice and asked him what about the fingers in the butt with the doctor? He told me to ‘toughen up.’ At that point, I realized, I guess I'm on my own," said Kwiatkowski.

Johnson says he told Schembechler about the abuse, but doubts he did anything with the information because the sexual misconduct continued.

"He told me that he would deal with it and never got back with me," explained Johnson. "I don't know if he did anything with it. I mean It continued, so obviously he didn't do anything with it."

The decision by the players to speak publicly for the first time comes on the heels of a lawsuit filed on behalf of many of Anderson’s alleged victims in March 2020. Just last month a University-commissioned report conducted by the law firm WilmerHale named Schembechler, who led the Wolverines to 13 Big Ten championships, as one of several university officials who likely knew of the misconduct but failed to act appropriately.

The report concluded, "Dr. Anderson’s misconduct may have been detected earlier and brought to an end" if the individuals made aware of it decades earlier would have acted on the information relayed to them by his victims.

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by Anonymousreply 34Last Saturday at 11:23 AM

"Concerning information was also shared with other University personnel. Although the information these individuals received varied in directness and specificity, Dr. Anderson’s misconduct may have been detected earlier and brought to an end if they had considered, understood, investigated, or elevated what they heard."

The report, which relied on 300 patient interviews and information from over 800 people, included a footnote stating that "multiple University personnel who worked with Mr. Schembechler told us that had he been aware of Anderson’s misconduct with patients, he would not have tolerated it."

Last week, current Wolverines head coach Jim Harbaugh, who played under Schembechler and whose father served as an assistant under the coach cast doubt on the report, saying "there was nothing that ever was swept under the rug or ignored. He addressed everything in a timely fashion. That’s the Bo Schembechler that I know."

Schembechler’s own son, Matt Schembechler alleges that as a child he was also a victim of Anderson, and that like the former players, he told his father.

"That hands-on situation that Dr. Anderson did to me, it just, call it intuition, I don't know, it just was wrong," Matt said.

The younger Schembechler appears to have had a strained relationship dating back decades with his father, who died of heart disease in 2006. In a lawsuit filed in the late 1990s, he sought $500,000 in damages from his father and the University of Michigan related to a deal to sell Michigan Stadium bleachers as souvenirs.

"He just wasn't built to be a father, and there was never any closeness in the relationship," he said of his father.

The former players, who have never spoken publicly before now said they decided to come forward to stand in solidarity with other victims and to protect future generations from experiencing the same type of abuse they faced as young student-athletes.

"The real reason I'm here is people are saying ‘no one will say or stand up.' I want to stand up for my fellow players and teammates who went through the same thing I did," said Kwiatkowski.

Fighting back tears, Johnson explained, "one of the things that, the reason why I'm speaking out is because of individuals that have come in after me, and kids that are there now.

"Just want to make sure that this abuse, just want to make sure that the abuse doesn't take place again, and that kids are protected"

by Anonymousreply 106/10/2021

This is a bombshell.

I never in a million years thought that football players would/could ever be victims of sexual abuse.

Not with their size and strength.

by Anonymousreply 206/10/2021

WTF would they go to FOX News? They love their sexual predators.

by Anonymousreply 306/10/2021

Coercion comes in many forms - it can be violence, drugs, threats and intimidation, sheer mindfucks, or economic and social pressure. Or the threat of losing one's athletic scholarship, and that's a situation where muscles won't help.

What I want to know is what this doctor had on the university officials, to keep his post forever in spite of all the complaints.

by Anonymousreply 406/10/2021

I'm not reading this shit, hmmkay?

by Anonymousreply 506/10/2021

This is infuriating.

by Anonymousreply 606/10/2021

I think the coaches’ response of “toughen up” is suspect. This allegedly happened in the 70s/80s. Why are we just hearing about it now in 2021? The doctor is dead so he cannot defend himself. Also, Macomb county is not an hour west of Ann Arbor. Is it that hard to get your facts straight?

by Anonymousreply 706/10/2021

Sports coaches are the new priests. They need to be watched like hawks.

by Anonymousreply 806/10/2021

Just make sure when you go see the doctor that you really, really have to take a shit.

by Anonymousreply 906/10/2021

[quote] Sports coaches are the new priests

Exactly.

Football, gymnastics, etc. All of it.

It seems like anywhere there are children present, the sexual predators will flock there.

by Anonymousreply 1006/10/2021

This may explain DL'a favorite 60-year-old OnlyFans bottom granddaddy. He was on the UM swim team 1978-1982.

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by Anonymousreply 1106/10/2021

R7 thinks it's weird that a coach would be dismissive of abuse. Weird. There have been other scandals like this at other schools like Penn State and Ohio State. What's so hard for you to believe?

by Anonymousreply 1206/10/2021

If you have a cold can't you see a doctor of your choice? This either or is absurd. We're not talking about a 5-year old.

by Anonymousreply 1306/10/2021

Schembechler sounds like a huge asshole

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by Anonymousreply 1406/10/2021

Wow, at R14.

His own son is calling him out!

by Anonymousreply 1506/10/2021

R13, football players have to check in with a team doctor to see if they're healthy and eligible to play (if they've had an injury)

by Anonymousreply 1606/10/2021

"Gee whiz, guys. Doc Anderson says I need another physical."

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by Anonymousreply 1706/10/2021

Can't believe Michigan has a statue dedicated to Schembechler, he sounds worse than Joe Paterno

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by Anonymousreply 1806/10/2021

"[R7] thinks it's weird that a coach would be dismissive of abuse. Weird."

It's very strange. If a typical football coach heard that the team doctor was acting like a perv with the student-athletes, they'd get a good doctor and at the very least. And since a lot of football coaches are total assholes, many would get him fired from his practice or run out of town, for being a f*g as well.

But this guy was kept on as a team doctor for ages and ages, with complaints about him piling up over the years! And it's not like finding another doctor would be hard, every orthopedist in the area would want the honor of being the doctor to a popular team, so Dr. Anderson could have been replaced any time... quietly or with drama. But he wasn't. So again... what the HELL did he have on the university higher-ups, that he was allowed to get away with this shit for so long?

by Anonymousreply 1906/10/2021

You must have slept through the Penn State scandal if you think a big time sports program wouldn't cover up abuse

by Anonymousreply 2006/10/2021

The Penn State dynamic was a bit different - it wasn't players being abused, it was poor kids that nobody in the football program gave a rat's ass about. And the abuse was done by someone with a high position within the football team organization, someone who was protected by a coach who was treated like a God within the university.

This is players being abused by someone who I presume wasn't even an employee, much less in a position of power within the coaching heirarchy. I don't get why he was allowed to get away with so damn much.

by Anonymousreply 2106/10/2021

Why isn't this bigger news?

The Michigan doctor who molested those female gymnasts were severely punished.

Why not THIS GUY who molested male athletes?

Again, with the fucking double standard.

by Anonymousreply 2206/11/2021

Because this guy died before the players went public, R22.

by Anonymousreply 2306/11/2021

Abuse is one thing, but fondling your scrotum and a finger up the ass are 2 completely normal and required parts of any sports physical. No?

by Anonymousreply 2406/11/2021

It wasn't abuse abuse.

by Anonymousreply 2506/11/2021

A few things about Matt. He isn't Bo's biological son. He and his two older brothers were adopted by Bo after he married their mother. Matt was 10 when he says he was first molested by the Doctor. Bo's only biological child Glenn, Matt's half-brother claims he is completely innocent. I do not expect Jim Harbough to admit any knowledge of Bo's actions. He has too much to lose. He and his father are Michigan legends.

by Anonymousreply 2606/11/2021

Haven't read the report but I read that over 800 people claimed to be abused by Anderson. Even if 50% are bullshitters, that's still an enormous amount of victims. You can't sweep away this mass of accusers. Yeah, Shembechler is worse than Paterno--he punched his son and beat his wife rather than believe them. And when Michigan's AD did believe Shembechler's son and wife and was going to fire the doctor, the coach stepped in. The doctor was employed for another 3 decades. Every victim after Shembechler's intervention can partly blame the coach. Scumbag.

Was Harbaugh in such a bubble, he had no clue? His father was a Michigan football coach--he had no idea either? According to players who have come forward, it was well known in the locker room Anderson was a pervert. They even claimed if players refused to comply they were threatened with an appointment with the doctor. Imagine that. Fuck the powers that be in college sports. The old Big Ten conference really has a thing for the predators, don't they? OH State, Penn State, Michigan State and now Michigan. Wisconsin, Indiana, Purdue and Illinois better set aside a war chest for the legal and compensation fees.

by Anonymousreply 2706/11/2021

He never molested ME!

by Anonymousreply 2806/11/2021

Thread useless without the vid.

by Anonymousreply 2906/11/2021

Jesus r24 is getting turned on. Can you read? This was not part of a physical.

by Anonymousreply 3006/11/2021

[quote]but fondling your scrotum and a finger up the ass are 2 completely normal and required parts of any sports physical. No?

Not if all you want is cold medicine.

by Anonymousreply 3106/11/2021

Sad that he never got called out while he was alive

by Anonymousreply 32Last Saturday at 10:59 AM

[quote] but fondling your scrotum and a finger up the ass are 2 completely normal and required parts of any sports physical. No?

[quote] Not if all you want is cold medicine

I would just call the cold medicine an "added bonus."

by Anonymousreply 33Last Saturday at 11:09 AM

Scary

by Anonymousreply 34Last Saturday at 11:23 AM
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