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Former jailed Michigan OL regrets letting Michigan football down

Graham Watson
Dr. Saturday

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(LSA Magazine)

Former Michigan offensive lineman Greg Skrepenak, a former All-American who captained the 1991 team, was released from jail in June after serving 24 months for corruption committed while he was the county commissioner in Pennsylvania.

While in jail, Skrepenak apparently had a lot of time to think of how his crime not only affected himself and his family, but also the Michigan football program. In LSA Magazine, Skrepenak penned an op-ed about his experience in prison and some of the things that changed his perspective.

I am at a loss as to how to tally the shame I feel about letting my family and former U-M coaches and teammates down by committing a corruption felony. I played under the great Bo Schembechler, who placed integrity above everything. To have tarnished what he stood for will haunt me forever.

Skrepenak also likened his fresh start to the beginning of a football game.

I might not be able to assign a number to the things I've realized, the contrition I feel, but I can change. I can move forward and be better. I can help other people learn from the mistakes I've made.

There is no number left except perhaps zero. I am starting over. I am humbled and sorry and I did all this to myself. But zero is not a negative. Zero is where I start from here. Zero is, after all, what the scoreboard reads before the game begins.

This is a really interesting — and somewhat sad — piece by a man who was a Michigan hero. Skrepenak was a two-time All-American, he won four Big Ten championships and played in three Rose Bowls. He was also a standout lineman for Los Angeles and Oakland Raiders. Football was a big part of what shaped him and in this piece he explains how he lost the values he learned from the game and from Michigan and that ultimately got him in trouble.

Thanks to MVictors.com for pointing out this piece from LSA Magazine.

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