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Former Ohio State Wrestler Speaks Out on Alleged Abuse to CNN: I Know Jim Jordan Knew

Former Ohio State wrestler Mike DiSabato, who claimed to NBC News that Rep. Jim Jordan ignored allegations of sexual abuse against the team’s doctor when he was the university’s assistant wrestling coach, appeared on CNN Wednesday morning.

Jordan, a House Freedom Caucus founder who coached wrestling at Ohio State from 1986 to 1994, claims he did not have any knowledge of the allegations of abuse against Dr. Richard Strauss, who died in 2005. DiSabato told NBC Jordan “is absolutely lying if he says he doesn’t know what was going on,” and appeared on CNN to further detail the abuse and Jordan’s alleged knowledge of it.

DiSabato explained his abuse at the hands of Strauss, which included an inappropriate genital exam when he was 14, and further examples of molestation.

“I know Jim knew about what I called the deviant sexual atmosphere that we were exposed to,” DiSabato said.

He explained that Jordan was “more like a big brother than a coach,” and that their families are close and they still talk.

When CNN’s John Berman asked if he had spoken to Jordan at the time about the abuse, DiSabato replied, “Absolutely.” He added that their conversations were often in the form of “locker room banter.”

Berman read off Jordan’s statement in response to the NBC report, which categorically denied any knowledge of the abuse.

“It’s just not true,” DiSabato said of the statement.

“What was happening was sexual assault,” DiSabato continued. “[Strauss] did this to wrestlers from other schools.”

Ohio State opened an investigation earlier this year after DiSabato made the allegations.

“There was no reason to deny that this happened,” DiSabato said of Jordan. “It’s not necessarily Jim Jordan’s fault that the university did not take action.” He added that the language in the congressman’s statement “really upset the victims” of Strauss.

“It just wasn’t true.”

Watch above, via CNN.

[image via screengrab]

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Aidan McLaughlin is the Editor of Mediaite. Send tips via email: aidan@mediaite.com. Ask for Signal. Follow him on Twitter: @aidnmclaughlin