Steubenville says let Richmond play - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Steubenville says let Richmond play

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STEUBENVILLE, Ohio -

The 2012 rape case involving high school football player Ma'Lik Richmond sent shock waves through Steubenville and its storied Big Red football program.

Richmond has filed a federal civil rights lawsuit against Youngstown State University for keeping him off the Penguin football team.  

Back in his hometown, there are many who support Richmond's fight for a second chance.

In Steubenville, the Big Red has won its share of football glory, and Ma'Lik Richmond was a standout player with great potential.

But the 2012 rape case put Richmond in a different spotlight, and his one year sentence took him off the field. 

So how do Big Red fans feel about him being kept off the team at YSU? If you want to know anything about Big Red football in Steubenville you go to the Spot Bar on South Fourth Street.

"It's a little bit of beating a dead horse in a way. A lot of people still do, but the guy paid his dues, he did his time. Let him get on with his life," said Guy Forcone.

Others at the bar expressed the same feelings about Richmond.

"He did everything he was supposed to do. Now he goes back to YSU and I think the kid needs a second chance. He's a good kid. He's not a bad kid," Jabo Callas said.

"Give him the opportunity to prove himself. I mean, if he does something wrong, that's one thing, but if he's out there trying to better himself give him that opportunity," added  Anthony Carinci.

 The local TV station says the Richman lawsuit barely caused a blip on their website.  Other people said the whole case caused a scar on Steubenville and Big Red football and five years later they wish the story would just go away. 

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