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IU football player Morgan Ellison suspended, questions remain



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Then-freshman running back Morgan Ellison avoids being tackled during the first half against Wisconsin on Nov. 4, 2017, at Memorial Stadium. A University sexual misconduct hearing panel determined Ellison sexually assaulted another student, according to an IndyStar report. Bobby Goddin Buy Photos

UPDATED (7:49 p.m.):

IU spokesman Chuck Carney declined to comment on Morgan Ellison's status as a student and whether or not he should be on campus.

However, Ellison was on campus Thursday attending class.

Carney said the case is ongoing.

It’s unclear whether the University sexual misconduct hearing panel's determination and punishment has gone into effect yet. 

When a determination is made, the defendant has five days to file an appeal, according to IU’s sexual misconduct policy. If an appeal is filed, the punishment is suspended until the appeal is resolved. 

It’s unclear whether or not the defendant’s punishment is in effect between the initial determination and the deadline to file an appeal.

When asked to clarify the policy, Emily Springston, University Director of Institutional Equity & Title IX, referred back to the policy. 

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A University sexual misconduct hearing panel determined football player Morgan Ellison sexually assaulted another student, according to records obtained and included in a report Wednesday night by IndyStar

The panel determined Ellison should be suspended from IU for 2.5 years and explained its decision in a letter dated Oct. 3. IU Coach Tom Allen said on Oct. 2 that Ellison had returned to practicing with the IU football team while he was still suspended indefinitely.

Ellison's long-term future with the program was unknown. On Monday, Allen said there was "no additional update" when asked about Ellison's status. 

Under the terms of the panel's determination, he is not allowed to be on any IU campus, according to the report. Ellison can appeal the panel's ruling until Thursday. 

Ellison declined to comment for this story, deferring to his lawyer. According to Monroe County court records, he has not been charged with a crime.

An IU Athletics spokesperson declined to comment on Ellison's status.

The panel's report states it determined Ellison sexually assaulted another IU student while she slept, and he used force to continue the assault when she woke up.

The IndyStar report states that during his hearing, Ellison denied using force and said all sexual activities that occurred were consensual.

According to the report, the panel's determination will also require Ellison to undergo counseling, and he is prohibited from having contact with the student he is accused of assaulting.

According to an IU Athletics release, Ellison was suspended from all football activities Aug. 24.

Neither Allen, nor IU Athletic Director Fred Glass, have discussed specifics related to why Ellison was suspended.

Earlier this month, several sources with IU Athletics confirmed to the IDS that Ellison was no longer a member of the team.

Ellison was set to be IU's starting running back for the 2018 season after a breakout freshman season in 2017. He led the team in rushing last season with 704 yards on 143 rushing attempts.

He was twice named the Big Ten Freshman of the Week during the 2017 season and was also named IU’s Offensive Newcomer of the Year.

This story will be updated.

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