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Friday, September 18, 2009
Michigan LB Mouton to sit one game

By Adam Rittenberg
ESPN.com

The Big Ten has suspended Michigan junior linebacker Jonas Mouton for one game for punching a Notre Dame player during last week's victory at Michigan Stadium.

Mouton punched Notre Dame center Eric Olsen following a run play with 8:42 left in the second quarter. No penalty was called on the play.

When asked about the punch before Wednesday's practice, Wolverines head coach Rich Rodriguez said Mouton wouldn't face any punishment from the team.

"What are you talking about?" Rodriguez told reporters. "I know they were talking about one incident on film, and I didn't see anybody throw a punch or anything like that. The little bit I saw on the clip, I saw guys got tangled up together, and Jonas tried to free himself. There's a whole lot of officials out there, and I'm sure if there was an infraction, then they'd call it."

The Big Ten reviewed the film and determined that Mouton struck Olsen, violating the league's sportsmanlike conduct agreement. The league also issued a public reprimand of Mouton, a starting outside linebacker for the Wolverines who has recorded 11 tackles, an interception and fumble recovery in two games.

It marks the first time in recent memory that the league has suspended a football player when the player's team did not.

"The actions of Jonas Mouton during the Notre Dame game are unacceptable," Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany said in a statement. "Mouton's behavior has no place in the sport of football or the Big Ten Conference."

Michigan accepted the suspension. A Michigan spokesman told ESPN.com that the team has no further comment and Rodriguez would address the situation following Saturday's game against Eastern Michigan.

Adam Rittenberg covers Big Ten football for ESPN.com. He can be reached at espnritt@gmail.com.