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Tensions Boil Over as Michigan State Players ‘Rough Up’ Michigan Player in Tunnel

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Tensions boiled over in the rivalry between Michigan State and the University of Michigan as Spartans players were seen pushing, kicking, and taking swipes at Wolverines player Ja’Den McBurrows in the tunnel ahead of Sunday’s game.

Video posted to social media shows McBurrows being roughly handled in the tunnel as fully uniformed and equipped Spartans players surrounded him. McBurrows eventually fell to the floor from the pushing and shoving. McBurrows appeared to have been the only Wolverines player in the hallway when the shoving match began.

Wolverines coach Jim Harbaugh also said that another of his players — who was not identified — was attacked, and may have sustained a broken nose.

“Two of our players were assaulted,” Harbaugh said, according to Fox Sports. “I saw on the one video. Ten on one. It was pretty bad. It needs to be investigated.”

The Michigan State University Police and Michigan’s athletic department and football program noted that an investigation into the scuffle has been started.

“Situations like these, and the safety of the community, are taken very seriously,” said Deputy Chief of Police Melissa Overton said.

Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren is also reportedly looking into the incident.

“What happened after the game was completely unacceptable,” Michigan athletic director Warde Manuel said. “I talked to the commissioner. He’s looking into it. The police is looking into it because they’ve seen the video. This is not how we should interact after the game.… This is not what the rivalry should be about. It should not be how it is remembered.”

Another video showed a fan reaching out and touching Michigan State coach Mel Tucker on the top of the head spurring the coach to take a swipe back at the fan.

Tucker also took to his Twitter account to say that his school has a “responsibility to uphold the highest level of sportsmanship.”

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