Matt Schembechler, Daniel Kwiatkowski and Gilvanni Johnson are expected to discuss the abuse at a press conference on Thursday. Their accusations come a month after a report commissioned by the university said Bo Schembechler and other officials were aware of the complaints about Dr. Robert Anderson, despite having remained in school for decades. .
“Matt Schembechler will set the record straight regarding his own abuse by Dr. Anderson and his father’s failure to protect him and other athletes,” attorney Mick Grewal said in a written statement.
He said Schembechler, then in his first year of his iconic run with the Wolverines, became enraged and punched him in the chest.
“It was the first time he’d hit me with a closed fist,” Matt Schembechler told ESPN, describing Schembechler, who adopted him in 1968. “It knocked me across the kitchen. “
He said his mother invited then-athletic director Don Canham to their home so he could describe the abuse. Young Schembechler told the Detroit News that Canham fired Anderson “almost immediately”.
“Bo went to see him and said, ‘I need him, he’s our team medic, get him back,’ and he did,” Schembechler, 62, told News . Canham died in 2005, a year before Bo Schembechler. Anderson died in 2008.
When the WilmerHale report came out, another of Bo Schembechler’s sons, Shemy Schembechler, expressed skepticism that his father had ignored the complaints about Anderson. He insisted his father would have acted if the players had shared their concerns about the doctor.
Matt Schembechler said his dad “was a great coach and made a lot of people happy. He made a ton of money for the University of Michigan by completing this stadium. He provided most of the children who played for him with a great experience. “
“I think he was a horrible human being,” he told ESPN.
Kwiatkowski and Johnson spoke to law firm Wilmer Hale, which produced the report, but they were not named there.
The report revealed that a player told Bo Schembechler, who died in 2006, that Anderson stroked him during an exam and that the coach told the player to “get tough.” , who has been abused four times, said lawyer Jon Marko.
Johnson, a receiver from 1982 to 1986, also informed Schembechler after his first medical examination with Anderson that the doctor had assaulted him, lawyer Dennis Mulvihill said.
Schembechler is a revered figure in Ann Arbor, where his statue stands in front of a football building that bears his name. The Wolverines won or shared 13 Big Ten football championships before retiring after the 1989 season.
Current Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh, who played under Schembechler, backed him last week in remarks to reporters.
“He never procrastinated on anything,” Harbaugh said. “He took care of it before sunset. This is the Bo Schembechler I know. There is nothing that has ever been swept under the rug or ignored. “
Anderson’s death toll could exceed 800, court records show. The report detailed many missed opportunities to arrest Anderson, who spent 37 years on campus.
“The fact that no one has taken meaningful action is particularly troubling in light of the nature, scope and duration of Dr. Anderson’s misconduct mission,” the report said.
Follow Ed White on https://twitter.com/edwritez