READ the report that exonerated Washington State’s football program of allegations of physical, emotional and verbal abuse, and it’s clear other athletes understood the charges were empty.
Former standout receiver Marquess Wilson left the team in November, and wrote a letter complaining about the abusive treatment suffered by him and his teammates.
The players interviewed by the Overland Park, Kan., law firm that conducted the review provided a completely different view. Wilson is a highly talented player and coach Mike Leach and his staff expected more out of him. He was held to standards that matched his skills, and that required participation and effort.
For his part, Wilson almost instantly recanted his abuse charges when he heard how they played in the sports media. Abuse is a powerful word, and he denied to investigators any physical abuse had occurred.
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The findings built on interviews with players, coaches, parents of players and athletic department staff members. Nothing matched Wilson’s retracted prose.
The Pac-12 review reached the same conclusion as WSU’s own internal investigation. None of the inflammatory charges held up.
Some clarification on practice rules and injuries is coming, but nothing beyond restating policies.
WSU President Elson Floyd took the abuse allegations seriously and set both reports in motion. His leadership helped set the record straight.