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The statue of Bo Schembechler on the University of Michigan’s campus was vandalized with paint and a message of support for survivors of Robert Anderson’s abuse in front of the football building on the University of Michigan campus in Ann Arbor Wednesday, Nov. 24, 2021.

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The Bo Schembechler statue on the University of Michigan’s campus was vandalized overnight with red paint and a message of support for the survivors of Robert Anderson’s sexual assaults.

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The statue is located in front of the football building and around 8 a.m. still had red paint splashed on it, including some on Schembechler’s face. In black, on the ground, the words “Bo knew #hailtothevictims” were written.

The football parking lot was full of cars parked in coaches’ assigned parking spaces as they prepared for Saturday’s game against Ohio State University. A clean-up crew began scrubbing the statue around 8:30 a.m.

The Bo Schembechler statue was sprayed with red paint in front of the football building on the University of Michigan campus in Ann Arbor Wednesday, Nov. 24, 2021.

The Bo Schembechler statue was sprayed with red paint in front of the football building on the University of Michigan campus in Ann Arbor Wednesday, Nov. 24, 2021.

An email was sent to the Free Press on Wednesday morning claiming responsibility. It came from an anonymous “Boknew” email address.

“The person responsible is an anonymous local resident who stated: ‘This action is done in solidarity with the Hail to the Victims campaign,” the email read. “Bo Schembechler is long seen as an iconic Michigan coach, but he knew that Robert Anderson, the team’s doctor in the 1970s and 1980s, was sexually assaulting countless players each year. When Bo’s son confronted him about his own assault, Bo punched him and told him to keep quiet. Bo pulled strings and bent over backwards to ensure that Anderson could keep his job. It is time for the world to know that Bo is responsible for the abuse of innumerable Michigan football players.”

"Bo knew. #hailtothevictims,"is spray painted in front of the Bo Schembechler statue in front of the football building on the University of Michigan campus in Ann Arbor Wednesday, Nov. 24, 2021.

“Bo knew. #hailtothevictims,”is spray painted in front of the Bo Schembechler statue in front of the football building on the University of Michigan campus in Ann Arbor Wednesday, Nov. 24, 2021.

Hundreds of people — mostly male athletes — are suing the university claiming Anderson, a medical doctor, sexually assaulted them over his decades-long career under the guise of medical treatment. Several people, including Schembechler’s adopted son, have said in recent months they told Schembechler about the ongoing abuse.

Former football player Jon Vaugh has been staging a sit-in in front of U-M President Mark Schlissel’s on-campus house since early October.

Contact David Jesse: 313-222-8851 or [email protected] Follow him on Twitter: @reporterdavidj. Subscribe to the Detroit Free Press.

This article originally appeared on Detroit Free Press: Bo Schembechler statue at University of Michigan vandalized with paint

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