Glenn Winston, it seems from his release from the team, was likely involved in recent events which, among other things, led me to create Jayme in MN's new avatar:
His (Winston's) previous incident, from early indications, was scarily similar to this one -- he went to a location with violent intent after a previous exchange, and ended up hurting people who were not involved.
Winston is now gone, meaning whatever Michigan State can presently do about him they have now done.
What is the concern of Michigan State right now is if this represents one or two isolated incidents, or is there something about their head coach which is letting the kids get out of control?
Dantonio's earlier treatment of Winston certainly should come under scrutiny. After the first violent incident, Winston spent much of the summer in jail, but was released and didn't miss any time.
This has happened before under Dantonio.
Police had charged Donald Germany, 21, with two counts of felonious assault but the grand jury returned no indictment because of a lack of evidence.
Coach Mark Dantonio welcomed Germany back to the football program Wednesday and didn't rule out the possibility of him playing Saturday against South Carolina. He has appeared in all nine games prior to the Nov. 6 incident and has eight tackles.
Follow-up story with more details here.
The case basically came down to the brother of the band who had punched the bouncer in the face and almost been killed by a knife, versus the word of the bouncer. Dantonio didn't know the guy was working the club. A jury threw the case out. The player didn't miss a moment of football, and had no further incidents.
PSU fans remember Germany for literally throwing a guy at Cincy's punter (drawing a B.S. personal foul penalty against the thrown Nittany Lion). Germany had more than his share of personal foul penalties, but hasn't again had trouble with the law.
At MSU, there was also the matter of the three players (including two defensive starters) involved in a robbery (non-violent):
Despite the charges which were officially brought up on Wednesday after police investigated the incident for months, Michigan State head coach Mark Dantonio said all three men will still play on the football field for the Spartans as they will not be suspended from team.
All three players have told the coach that they are innocent of the charges.
Much later on, SirDarean and T.J. missed the post-2007 bowl game, Adams for "unspecified violations" and Williams for being academically ineligible, one of five MSU players to earn that distinction after Dantonio's first fall semester. Neither Adams or Williams returned to the team in 2008.
What this says about Dantonio is hard to say.
It's absolutely not clear evidence that Dantonio turns a blind eye to violence by his players. However, the Germany incident might have taught Dantonio a lesson about trusting his own players, a lesson which might have served him poorly in subsequent cases.
No school can get by without discipline cases. However, I do think these can be minimized by a coach taking decisive action.
What we can honestly say about Dantonio at MSU is that it seems his first instinct is to trust his players, issuing no missed football games for first offenses. When he gets burned, however, he brings the hammer.
I think MSU will keep Dantonio around for long enough to test this "first is free, second is your last" supposed discipline strategy. Right now, it's just a hypothesis.
Another hypothesis: it's not working too well.