Ethics watchdogs request investigation of Jordan, fellow coaches defend him


Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) speaks during a House Judiciary Committee hearing on June 28. The influential House conservative has repeatedly denied that he saw, knew about or heard about the alleged misconduct in the Ohio State University athletic department three decades ago. It was the first example of a professional crisis communications firm getting involved in defending Jordan since the allegations became national news last week. Jordan denies knowing about the abuse.

"What has been said about Jim Jordan is absolutely wrong", said the statement released by former head coach Russ Hellickson, and five former assistants. They said "We not only stand by him, but believe him to be a man of character and honor and Congress would be well-served to have more Jim Jordan's serving on Capitol Hill".

Andy Geiger, whose tenure overlapped Jordan's by only a year in the mid-1990s, told the Post he worked with Hellickson to move the wrestlers out of Larkins Hall because of widespread complaints about voyeurism in the showers.

Dunyasha Yetts, who wrestled at Ohio State in 1993 and 1994, said he and others told Jordan about Strauss. He claims that "Jordan definitely knew that these things were happening - yes, most definitely..."

The former wrestler says that Hellickson and Jordan had to have known about Strauss' actions because wrestlers would talk about it openly "in the locker room, on the buses, during practice".

Yetts said he and his teammates talked to Jordan numerous times about their interactions with the doctor. "If I had been, I would have dealt with it.... if there are victims, they deserve justice".

OSU spokesman Chris Davey said that due to the ongoing investigation into the allegations against Strauss, he is unable to comment.

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"It was expressed to me by one member that after Joe Paterno, you never want to go too deep in defending somebody, because you can have somebody who was just nearly seen as an otherworldly figure of integrity and then you find out that 'Wow, he really did know more than we thought he did".

A group of former Ohio State wrestling coaches defended Jordan in a statement Monday, saying he hadn't heard of any abuse at the university. The well-being of student-athletes was all of our concern. "If we had heard of any abuse, we would have spoken up", they stated. Strauss committed suicide in 2005 and the university has since opened up an investigation.

Strauss described the fondling as just "doing his job", said ex-wrestler Denyasha Yetts. His family says that they are "shocked and saddened" over the allegations, and that they are cooperating, detailed ESPN.

But his denials have been met with skepticism and anger from two former members of the team, NBC News reported. Members of our family have been in contact with the investigation team at Perkins Coie.

The university is investigating the allegations against Strauss, which range from inappropriate touching to sexual assault.

Yet Jordan also has defenders among the Republican ranks - including President Donald Trump.

"Whatever payments were received for trying to destroy President Trump may be available to destroy other high-achieving Republicans", Gohmert stated.