The Ohio State University released the following statement on Thursday, alleging a massage therapist targeted football players in an attempt to engage in sexual acts with them.
In March 2021, the university became aware that the State Medical Board of Ohio investigated an independent massage therapist who engaged in inappropriate and exploitative behavior targeting members of the Ohio State football team. The university has confirmed that the Medical Board has taken action, and this individual has had her license permanently revoked.
Our first concern and top priority is for the safety and well-being of our student-athletes. Within days of learning of these allegations, the university quickly launched an independent investigation of the matter. An experienced legal and compliance resource, Barnes & Thornburg, led the independent investigation, and has completed its work. Barnes & Thornburg found that no university or athletic department staff had knowledge of the massage therapist’s activities. Her actions were part of a scheme to exploit football student-athletes and were in violation of her state license. In addition, Ohio State does not believe the massage therapist’s actions trigger NCAA rules or form the basis for NCAA violations. While no self-reporting is required, Ohio State proactively shared the exploitative behavior with the NCAA, and a report has been made to the Franklin County Prosecutor’s Office.
For transparency, we are making the report and any associated public records available at this time. All student-athletes on the football team, along with coaches and staff, participated in this process. Based on the findings of the investigation, the university, through its departments of Public Safety and Athletics, has banned the massage therapist from campus and locations where students are lodging or living and has served her with a cease and desist order regarding any additional contact with students, coaches or staff.
Read the full report here.
*Editor’s Note: The headline of this story has been changed to reflect that fact that the massage therapist in question was never employed by the University.