More evidence of awful culture at MSU, volleyball this time

Submitted by Amaizing Blue on April 24th, 2018 at 10:56 AM…

Short version-Rick Butler, A prominent youth volleyball coach was accused of sexual assault by six (!) different former players in 1995.  His defense (?) was that in at least three cases, the sex was consensual and happened after the players turned 18.  

Despite this, MSU volleyball kept recruiting his players and working with him well after these allegations were made public.  They played exhibition games at his facility as recently as 2014.  

The head volleyball coach at MSU, Cathy George,  worked for him in the past.  When she was the head coach at WMU, she was talking to one of the players who alleged Butler had abused her hundreds of times.  She apparently told her "I'm sorry that this all happened, but I will still have to recruit from him."  (Because, you know, winning.)

Their culture really is every bit as bad or worse than anyone could imagine.  They SHOULD fire everyone, wait three years, and start over.  They as little as possible.





Mr Miggle

April 24th, 2018 at 11:05 AM ^

The school’s volleyball coach “is conducting business with ... a known sexual abuser,” Hogshead-Makar wrote on July 21, 2017, to then-Michigan State athletic director Mark Hollis and to the school’s then-general counsel, Robert Noto. She got no response.

She also attached a photo of George sitting with Butler at a girls’ national volleyball tournament in Florida last year, when multiple players for other teams wore T-shirts citing allegations against Butler. The photo was from a report by Jacksonville’s First Coast News television.


April 24th, 2018 at 1:45 PM ^

from reporting the abuse.

This goes well beyond the article and has been out since late February. I posted something back then. The link below is to the legal action filed. MSU is specifically mentioned in Items 16-18.

The whole thing should be read to understand how sick this guy is. No one should be associating with him except the prison guards.

Link to court filing.




April 24th, 2018 at 2:39 PM ^

Whistleblower regarding Butler? Pretty obvious the advocates were just tryiing to exert as much pressure as they could via any means they could since they failed to dissaude parents from sending their kids to him. Frankly I find it destable they were trying to hijack another situation to use as leverage in their vendetta. It sucks there wasn't a real trial or punishment for him, but the advocates attempting to pressure colleges after failing to convince parents is just a low move imho. 


April 25th, 2018 at 2:10 PM ^

The allegations about Butler have been going on for a long time. At one point, a player on one of the early Penn State powerhouse teams kept playing for him while her sister was suing him for sexual abuse. It all kept blowing over, but some of his former players have stayed determined to make sure this remains in the public light.

Butler has been hovering between predator and powerful club coach for a couple of decades.


April 24th, 2018 at 2:39 PM ^

Whistleblower regarding Butler? Pretty obvious the advocates were just tryiing to exert as much pressure as they could via any means they could since they failed to dissaude parents from sending their kids to him. Frankly I find it destable they were trying to hijack another situation to use as leverage in their vendetta. It sucks there wasn't a real trial or punishment for him, but the advocates attempting to pressure colleges after failing to convince parents is just a low move imho. 

Leaders And Best

April 24th, 2018 at 5:44 PM ^

I don't have a problem with recruiting his players. I am not sure why the kids should be the ones to suffer here.

I think the bigger issue is the fact that the head volleyball coach and athletic department were contacted regarding him and decided not to do anything. And if the school did anything else to support his program like running exhibitions there. That combined with everything else going on makes it more troubling.

But I kind of agree with you that this on its own probably wouldn't be as big an issue to me. Seems like the bigger issue in this story is the actual alleged perpetrator and how he has used the system to protect himself.


April 24th, 2018 at 11:05 AM ^

Lots of bad stuff going on here, but no schools should get dragged thru the mud for recruiting the players. You are essentially punishing the girls twice if you fail to recruit the program. You get abused and then the college doesn't offer you a scholarship?

Hopefully he just gets shut down and all of this is avoided. If the MSU coach didn't report anything she needs to get canned.


April 24th, 2018 at 11:31 AM ^

But I still don't think the response is to continue recruiting the players. I think you notify as many people as possible. Tell the school that you will no longer recruit this school for any sport until the coach is fired. Let parents know, that if you want your child to be recruited, then they can't play for this coach. It just sounds like a very Penn State fan reaction, to look the other way and "don't punish the kids" while we let the child molester work in peace.  


April 24th, 2018 at 2:29 PM ^

The change should come from the parents who should never have their kid playing for this scumbag which would force him to quit........but all I'm saying is that if people in these girls lives have made poor decisions then she should not be penalized.   


Leaders And Best

April 24th, 2018 at 6:06 PM ^

I think there are other solutions. Don't recruit and visit his personal gym. Recruit them at their high school and home. Let the players and parents know that the trainer/coach is not welcome at their school because of the allegations, but they are.

It will probaby make recruiting his players much tougher, but I think it is a better solution than not recruiting his players. I think there are a lot of other reasons besides the trainer/coach that parents' might be sending their kids to work out at his facility, and those systemic issues have to be approched in several ways outside of just recruiting. He probably needs licenses and permits to run his gym, be a trainer, or coach in leagues--those are other avenues to attack as well.


April 24th, 2018 at 11:20 AM ^

Did other schools recruit players from his team?  I'm all for ragging on MSU, and certainly they seemed to ignore some of the accusations, but I have to think that schools (maybe even Michigan) also worked with him.  Maybe they stopped earlier than MSU, but I'd like to see some dates before I just assume that MSU is always the least moral party in every interaction and not, say, just generally but not uniquely callous.


April 24th, 2018 at 11:35 AM ^

I'm on mobile, so I can't give a good link, but Chris Solari on Twitter says:

MSU signed 3 players from the program since 2008. Michigan has 4 players in that time; others at WMU, NMU, GVSU & Calvin College. Every Big Ten school, national power VB programs and small colleges also have recruited players from the Illinois club team.


April 24th, 2018 at 11:30 AM ^

... that any parent would send their child to this man after those allegations. Even if they were not true, he admitted to having sexual relations with 3 of them after they turned 18, which is still creepy as fuck considering his relationship with them for years prior. I'm less disappointed in schools recruiting top talent, than I am in parents for exposing their children to such a slime ball. Where in god's name are people's priorities. 


April 24th, 2018 at 11:37 AM ^

Unbelievable how almost daily something new and disgusting comes out of East Lansing. Even iff it was just one person, or a couple things that is very unfortunate, but this seems so wide spread it’s insanity. I’m also disgusted how they seem to not want to fix anything and brush any transgressions under the rug. No apologies, no admission of guilt and no healing for the victims.


April 24th, 2018 at 12:10 PM ^

This will be spun by MSU fans (at least some) that this is naother act of irresponsible reporting by the media....they'll even figure out a way to blame this on ESPN.

Perkis-Size Me

April 24th, 2018 at 12:14 PM ^

Nothing really surprises me with MSU anymore. You could've told me that Lou Anna Simon was secretely running an underground sex trafficking ring through MSU and I'd be like "yeah, that makes sense."


April 24th, 2018 at 12:33 PM ^

So...punish the players who have already been assault victims? What the shit are you talking about?

MSU looks bad enough in the wake of the Nassar investigation. There is no need to exaggerate or spin a fact like this. Just sit back and wait for Engler to speak some more.


April 24th, 2018 at 12:41 PM ^

I don't like MSU. I always root against them. What happened with Nassar is evil and completely deplorable. The Board of Trustees is clueless. Engler has been completely tone deaf as the interim head of the school. Sleazy things have happened with both the football and basketball teams. Stuff is regularly swept under the rug. The school and the athletic department and specific coaches need to be held accountable for their actions. And also held accountable for their LACK of action.

However. When is the point when we are just piling on? Is there a point where we are just looking for anything that is even tangentially connected to MSU, and using that to blame them for their "failure?" At what point do statements like "fire them all" and "burn the whole school down" just show bitter hatred, and not a concern for justice?

Blind hatred and a desire for vengeance and punishment sometimes aren't the best course of action. I believe the pressure on MSU will continue. And I also believe that there is a lot more that needs to happen. However, this article is one I won't use as a reason to come down more on MSU.

Bando Calrissian

April 24th, 2018 at 1:48 PM ^

Every single person who did anything wrong in this situation deserves to be punished. The victims demand it. Full stop.

If it's "piling on" to uncover new villains in a sprawling case, how is justice even a thing? The last to be uncovered should be punished for their wrongdoing just as much as the first.


April 24th, 2018 at 3:25 PM ^

What is the appropriate punishment for sitting next to a sleaze-bag at a sporting event? Perhaps MSU has something to be guilty for in this situation, but the article was so poorly written I had trouble discerning what exactly MSU is guilty of, in this particular case.
This appears to be "guilt by association," and a very shoddy attempt at journalism.


April 24th, 2018 at 2:00 PM ^

if MSU had done anything right in this situation. If they had immediately began cleaning house and looking at how they failed, why they failed, and making sure this never happens again, then yeah, don't look for new stuff every day.

However, MSU has done nothing but obstruct, deny, and even shame victims.  The Claim the Nassar was a rogue one off is false, and the excuse that everything was handled properly within the institution and by it's employees, hiding behind the fact that the law did not prosecute, when evidence of them encouraging victims to remain silent and a push to have things changed to literring fines has been rampant.

I want MSU as an institution to do well.  I'd hate to see a rivalry that was annoying but fun, go away, but I want to see changes and people held accountable for wrong doings. It is frustrating to me to see how focused the BOT, President, and coaches are to put winning over anything else.  The students and faculty have shown their displeasure with how things have been handled.  I want to see someone up top do the same.  

scanner blue

April 24th, 2018 at 2:44 PM ^

From the "fire Beilein" thread dated Jan 12, 2017 ... "Beilein=Hoke". I'll posit Mgoblog-(maize-blue)= Mo Better.

Yes I took names and notes ...still waiting for ThatCeciGuy, Lampuki22, MGo Dead etc. to post .. they had some real hate for our Bball coach.