Ex-staffer: Michigan St, Dantonio was warned about recruit

Head coach Mark Dantonio of the Michigan State Spartans leads the team on the field before the game against the Nebraska Cornhuskers at Memorial Stadium on November 17, 2018 in Lincoln, Nebraska. (Photo by Steven Branscombe/Getty Images)

EAST LANSING, Mich. (AP) — A former football recruiter who is suing Michigan State says he urged coach Mark Dantonio to reject a player who subsequently was convicted of sexual assault.

The former recruiter, Curtis Blackwell, said Dantonio chose Auston Robertson in 2016 over the objections of staff. He said it was widely known Robertson had a criminal history in Indiana and would be a controversial choice. Blackwell said he and others warned that Robertson would be a “horrible fit for a college campus.”

The remarks were made during a deposition, which is part of a lawsuit against Dantonio and other officials. Blackwell’s contract wasn’t renewed in 2017.

His lawsuit claims he was illegally suspended and released in the fallout over assault charges against three other players. Dantonio this week declined to comment about Blackwell’s lawsuit.

Robertson is eligible for parole in 2021.

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