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Report: Michigan mishandled alleged sexual assault case

By Tom Fornelli | College Football Writer

Brendan Gibbons was expelled from Michigan in December
Brendan Gibbons was expelled from Michigan in December. (USATSI)

According to a student task force formed in February, Michigan mishandled an alleged sexual assault case against former kicker Brendan Gibbons, who was expelled from the school in December.

The Central Student Government studied Michigan's sexual misconduct policies and released its findings on Sunday. The CSG says that Michigan failed to meet deadlines to conduct investigations and that Brady Hoke was probably lying about Gibbons when he was asked why he wasn't with the team for its bowl game in December.

Michigan spokesman Rick Fitzgerald says the school hopes "the CSG's focus on these issues will lead to a greater awareness of the student sexual misconduct policy and even more survivors coming forward."

The alleged sexual assault, which Gibbons has never been charged for, purportedly took place on Nov. 22, 2009. That same day a Michigan football player was arrested after a female student reported the player had sexually assaulted her at a party. Gibbons would not receive a letter from the school saying it had been determined there is a "preponderance of evidence" suggesting he committed sexual assault until Nov. 20, 2013. He would be expelled from the school on Dec. 20, 2013.

"Michigan Athletics has no influence over any part of a review of a potential violation of University's student code of conduct — not the process, the investigation or the timing of the resolution," said Brady Hoke in a February statement. "In general, while we may be aware of an ongoing proceeding, we always strive to balance transparency with privacy.

"Our usual approach is to not issue discipline related to a student's standing on the team before the University's process runs its course and the outcome has been determined. We will always respect the rights and confidentiality of the process and the parties involved. One way we do that is by not discussing the details of student disciplinary matters."

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