A Michigan State hockey player accused an Ohio State opponent of directing a racial slur toward him during a Nov. 11 college hockey game.
On Monday, Michigan State senior Jagger Joshua posted a message to social media where he claims that a racial slur was directed toward him on several occasions in a 4-3 win over the Buckeyes.
“Acts of racism do not belong in hockey, as they can discourage African Americans and minorities like myself from playing and loving the game,” Joshua wrote in a statement posted to Twitter. “Inaction in the face of racist comments and actions allow these behaviors to continue.
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“On November 11th in our game against Ohio State, one of their players called me a racial slur multiple times. One of the officials heard the slur and gave the player a game misconduct penalty. There was an investigation by the Big Ten in the days after the incident, but not further action has been taken by the Big Ten conference or Ohio State.”
A look at the box score shows that a 10-minute game misconduct penalty was issued to an Ohio State player in the second period of the game.
“Due to the absence of indisputable evidence presented to the conference, the conference has not imposed further disciplinary action,” the Big Ten said in a statement to The Detroit News.
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“The Big Ten Conference is committed to providing our student-athletes inclusive environments free from acts of harassment or discrimination in any form.
“The safety and well-being of our campus communities remains our top priority.”
Joshua is in his fourth season at Michigan State and is fifth on the team in points (11) with six goals and five assists.
“The inaction has left me feeling confused and pessimistic about the movement of diversity within hockey culture,” Joshua continued. “The ignorance of racism does not belong in our game, and I feel that I need to make people aware that this incident occurred, because without acknowledgment, the problem gets worse.”
Adam Nightingale, who is in his first year as head coaching in East Lansing, released a statement via Michigan State athletics.
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“At Michigan State, we are committed to a safe and welcoming space for our student-athletes,” Nightingale said in a statement to Twitter. “It is important to me that all student-athletes feel comfortable and supported in our locker room and in our program.
“I am proud to have Jagger Joshua on our team.”
Michigan State is 9-4-1 on the season and 5-2-1 in conference play.