Wednesday, March 11, 2009
Winston pleads guilty to assault
By Adam Rittenberg ESPN.com
Michigan State freshman running back/kick returner Glenn Winston has been indefinitely suspended after pleading guilty Tuesday to assault charges stemming from an off-campus fight in October that seriously injured a Spartans men's hockey player.
Winston pleaded guilty to misdemeanor aggravated assault and misdemeanor assault and battery. He faces up to a year in jail and fines; sentencing is set for April 29.
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"Glenn Winston has been suspended immediately and indefinitely from all football-related activities," Michigan State coach Mark Dantonio said in a statement.
Another Spartans football player, freshman walk-on Mitchell White, pleaded guilty last month to a misdemeanor assault charge in connection with the incident. White has a sentencing hearing Monday.
Dantonio has not addressed White's status, though both White and Winston remain on the team's official roster.
Michigan State hockey player A.J. Sturges suffered a severe head injury during the fight. Sturges continues to experience headaches but hopes to return to the ice for the 2009-10 season.
Although Winston's suspension is indefinite, his attorney, Jim Newton, told the Lansing State Journal that Winston agreed to a plea deal "to get the matter over with and get on with his classes, and get ready for spring football."
Michigan State opens spring drills March 24.
The 6-2, 218-pound Winston appeared in seven games last fall, including one contest after the incident. He led Michigan State in kick returns with 16 for 364 yards and also had three rushing attempts.
Adam Rittenberg covers the Big Ten for ESPN.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.