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Detroit Lions wide receiver Quintez Cephus filed a lawsuit against Wisconsin on Tuesday alleging that the university used him as a “scapegoat” during his sexual assault investigation in 2018, according to The Associated Press.
Cephus played at Wisconsin from 2016-19, before he was selected by the Lions in the fifth round of last year’s draft. He missed the 2018 season, however, as he was temporarily expelled from the school amid his arrest and allegations against him.
Quintez Cephus acquitted after sexual assault allegations at Wisconsin
Two women said that Cephus had sex with them at his apartment in 2018 without their consent, which resulted in him being kicked off of the team, out of the university and arrested. He was expelled from the school for violating its non-academic misconduct code.
Cephus, however, was acquitted of all charges in 2019 after the jury deliberated for less than 45 minutes on the case.
He returned to the Badgers in 2019, and racked up 901 receiving yards and seven touchdowns while leading them to the Rose bowl.
Cephus, 22, recorded 349 yards and two touchdowns in 13 games for the Lions last season.
In his lawsuit, Cephus said that Wisconsin was “seeking to push for harsh male prosecutions in order to remedy its long-standing failure to address sexual assault complaints,” per the report. He felt that, as a top football player there, he was “the perfect candidate” for the university to do so.
Cephus is seeking unspecified damages in the lawsuit. His lawyer, Andrew Miltenberg, said he thinks Cephus would have been drafted earlier had he not been kicked off the team and out of the university.
“He wants to set a precedent so that schools are more careful and more diligent in how they proceed on these cases and not just sort of rushing ahead to judgment when they know for a fact they don’t have all the evidence,” Miltenberg said, via the Associated Press.
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