While the sentencing of child sexual abuser Larry Nassar concluded on Wednesday, the fallout from the scandal is still ongoing. On Friday, Michigan State University athletic director Mark Hollis announced his retirement at an emotional news conference.
Hollis emphasized that he was not forced to retire or leave MSU, and that the decision was made by him and his wife, Nancy.
Hollis, who had been at MSU since 2008, also released a full statement on the MSU Athletics website. His retirement comes on the heels of the NCAA officially opening an investigation into the role MSU’s athletic department played in Larry Nassar’s years of abuse. Hollis told the Detroit Free Press on
Wednesday that he and the athletic department intend to fully cooperate.
“Since my first day on the job as athletic director, my focus has always been on the student-athlete. They are at the core of our athletic department mission statement,” Hollis said. “Our first priority has always been and will always be their health and safety. In regards to the letter we received from the NCAA last night, the athletic compliance and university general counsel offices are preparing a comprehensive response.”
At his news conference, Hollis said that his retirement doesn’t change his plan to cooperate with the NCAA’s investigation.
Hollis also said that he didn’t recall ever meeting Larry Nassar, which is consistent with what he told police. However, he revealed some disturbing information about former MSU gymnastics coach Kathie Klages, and her support of Nassar.
Klages retired in February 2017 after several women revealed that Klages had discouraged them from reporting their concerns with Nassar’s treatment.
Hollis’ departure from MSU is the latest high profile staffing change at the school. On Wednesday, Michigan State University president Lou Anna Simon announced her resignation. And things could finally be changing at USA Gymnastics as well — the US Olympic Committee told USAG on Thursday that the entire 21-member board must resign in the next six days, or USAG will be decertified.
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