COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Texts given to NBC News allege a retired Ohio State wrestling coach reached out to two ex-team members and asked them to support Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan a day after they accused him of turning a blind eye to alleged sexual abuse.
NBC News reports former coach Russ Hellickson asked the wrestlers to support former assistant coach Jordan, who has repeatedly said he had no idea team doctor Richard Strauss was allegedly molesting the athletes.
Former wrestler Dunyasha Yetts shared texts with NBC News.
“If you think the story got told wrong about Jim, you could probably write a statement for release that tells your story and corrects what you feel bad about,” a July 4 text allegedly from Hellickson said. “I can put you in contact with someone who would release it.”
Another former wrestler, Mike DiSabato, also shared a text message defending Jordan that he got from Hellickson.
DiSabato and Yetts told NBC that Hellickson “made it clear to them he was under pressure from Jordan to get statements of support from members of the team.”