Football team member prompts challenge from YSU student leaders - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Football team member prompts challenge from YSU student leaders

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Ma'lik Richmond wearing number 96 as he practices with the Penguins Ma'lik Richmond wearing number 96 as he practices with the Penguins
YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio -

Youngstown State University's Student Government Association disagrees with the decision to allow a student who served time for a rape case to join YSU's football team. SGA urges the athletics department to reconsider the action.

Ma'Lik Richmond joined the Penguins football team in January and is currently practicing for the new season.

Richmond was one of two former Steubenville High School football players accused of raping a 16-year-old girl in 2012.

Richmond completed his one year sentence for the crime.

YSU Head Football Coach Bo Pelini said that Richmond deserves a second chance and there were stipulations set that he lived up to.

"I gave him some stipulations and some things he had to be able to do and if he lived up to them he'd be able to come out and see if he could be a member of our football team. He did those things and continues to do those things right now and he's done a nice job for us," said Pelini.

Meanwhile, SGA said in a statement that it "urges YSU Athletics to reconsider the decision to allow Ma'lik Richmond to play and take into consideration the kind of message it sends to the university community, specifically victims of sexual assault."

SGA added that the move is "a decision that completely disregards the year's long work that has been undertaken by the administration of the university to increase the awareness and prevention of sexual assault across campus. We encourage Mr. Richmond to continue his pursuit of a degree in the classroom, however, he should not have the privilege of being a Division I student athlete." 

Ernie Barkett, the vice president of SGA, said that they will be reaching out to the athletic director and university president to have a meeting in the coming weeks.

SGA is also encouraging students to express any concerns to the athletic director.
 

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