Summoning the spirit of General George Patton, Dantonio vowed his first duty is to "protect the troops first."
Dantonio singled out Detroit News columnist Rob Parker for his remarks on WDIV Channel 4's "Clubhouse Confidential" segment and said Parker's remarks bordered on slander.
Particularly drawing the ire of the coach was the mention of sophomore backup quarterback Kirk Cousins as possibly being part of the incident.
"Here's a young man who's done everything right, and he's thrown under the bus by someone who has no credibility in my mind," Dantonio said at his weekly press conference.
Dantonio characterized the speculation as "totally inaccurate" and strongly condemned the implications.
"I take offense to that, his family takes offense to that and he was with his family all night Saturday night and I think that borders on slander," Dantonio said, "and if you're going to say something you better get it right. That's number one."
He also singled out the Oakland Press for an article written by Dana Garuder which inferred that the reason three players did not dress for the MSU/UM game might have something to do with the incident.
"Number two is, I take offense, this program takes offense, to The Oakland Press for signaling out three people who were not dressed," Dantonio said. He went on to explain the reason for freshman guard Ethan Ruhland, one of the implicated players, not dressing for the game was because of surgery and had nothing to do with the incident.
"So, here's a young man who does everything right," Dantonio said of Ruhland, "and he's thrown under the bus by somebody who has no credibility in my mind, so that's where I'm at with that."
Finally, Dantonio noted the ongoing nature of the investigation into the fight.
"Nothing's been substantiated," he said, "I discipline, or we discipline internally, and when things come to a head ... and when police are involved, that's when I'll talk about things and give names. But until then, I'm going to protect our football team, and I think that's the way you'd want your family to be protected, or your children, or your brothers, and that's what we're going to do."
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