Reports of sexual deviancy, including voyeurism and lewd acts of harassment, have engulfed the Ohio State wrestling program in a story that has Wisconsin ties.
Ohio State has launched an investigation into the behavior of the late Richard Strauss, a former athletic doctor at OSU, who has been accused of acts of sexual abuse.
Former wrestlers have also told Politico that they were regularly harassed in their training facility by sexually aggressive men who attended the university or worked there. Head coach Russ Hellickson at times had to physically drag gawkers out of the building, Larkins Hall.
Entangled in the situation is powerful House member Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), who was an OSU assistant coach at the time and has denied knowing about any abuse during his tenure. He is not the subject of allegations, but former wrestlers have said there was no way Jordan could not have been aware of the instances.
Jordan was a two-time national champion at the University of Wisconsin in the mid-1980s.
Jordan was an assistant at Ohio State from 1986 to 1994 and has said if he knew about any type of abuse, he would have done something about it. Today, Jordan is one of the most powerful members of the House and a potential candidate to replace House Speaker Paul Ryan of Janesville, who is not seeking re-election.
Hellickson is a Wisconsin wrestling legend from Stoughton High School who was born in Madison, wrestled for the Badgers and took silver in the 1976 Summer Olympics. He won seven national freestyle titles during his wrestling days, and he served as head coach at the University Wisconsin from 1983-86. He’s one of six coaches who released a statement in support of Jordan.
Jordan’s family also received tragic news over the weekend when current University of Wisconsin wrestler and nephew of Jim Jordan, Eli Stickley, was killed in a car accident.