Interim MSU president to resign following Nassar comments

Interim Michigan State president John Engler tendered his resignation Wednesday, less than a week after saying that some victims of convicted sexual predator Larry Nassar are "enjoying" the "spotlight" they are in.

In his 11-page resignation letter, Engler said he would leave his post effective 9 a.m. on Jan. 23.

The university's board had scheduled a meeting for Thursday to discuss a "personnel action." While it was not known what that action was to be, the meeting was to come on the heels of an interview with The Detroit News during which Engler said:

"You've got people, they are hanging on and this has been ... there are a lot of people who are touched by this, survivors who haven't been in the spotlight. In some ways they have been able to deal with this better than the ones who've been in the spotlight who are still enjoying that moment at times, you know, the awards and recognition. And it's ending. It's almost done."

7 PHOTOS
Larry Nassar survivors accept Arthur Ashe Courage Award
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Larry Nassar survivors accept Arthur Ashe Courage Award
LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 18: Recipients of the Arthur Ashe Award for Courage speak onstage at The 2018 ESPYS at Microsoft Theater on July 18, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images)
THE 2018 ESPYS - This Wednesday, the worlds best athletes and biggest stars will join host Danica Patrick for 'The 2018 ESPYS Presented by Capital One' on ABC. The star-studded evening celebrates the best moments from the year in sports and will air live on ABC, July 18 from 8:00-11:00 p.m. EDT, from the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles. (Image Group LA via Getty Images) THE ARTHUR ASHE AWARD FOR COURAGE RECIPIENTS, SARAH KLEIN, TIFFANY THOMAS LOPEZ, ALY RAISMAN
THE 2018 ESPYS - This Wednesday, the worlds best athletes and biggest stars will join host Danica Patrick for 'The 2018 ESPYS Presented by Capital One' on ABC. The star-studded evening celebrates the best moments from the year in sports and will air live on ABC, July 18 from 8:00-11:00 p.m. EDT, from the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles. (Image Group LA via Getty Images) THE ARTHUR ASHE AWARD FOR COURAGE RECIPIENTS
THE 2018 ESPYS - This Wednesday, the worlds best athletes and biggest stars will join host Danica Patrick for 'The 2018 ESPYS Presented by Capital One' on ABC. The star-studded evening celebrates the best moments from the year in sports and will air live on ABC, July 18 from 8:00-11:00 p.m. EDT, from the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles. (Image Group LA via Getty Images) THE ARTHUR ASHE AWARD FOR COURAGE RECIPIENTS, SARAH KLEIN, TIFFANY THOMAS LOPEZ, ALY RAISMAN
THE 2018 ESPYS - This Wednesday, the worlds best athletes and biggest stars will join host Danica Patrick for 'The 2018 ESPYS Presented by Capital One' on ABC. The star-studded evening celebrates the best moments from the year in sports and will air live on ABC, July 18 from 8:00-11:00 p.m. EDT, from the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles. (Image Group LA via Getty Images) THE ARTHUR ASHE AWARD FOR COURAGE RECIPIENTS
LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 18: Sarah Klein, Tiffany Thomas Lopez, Aly Raisman, and the other recipients of the Arthur Ashe Award for Courage accept their award onstage at The 2018 ESPYS at Microsoft Theater on July 18, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 18: (L-R) Sarah Klein, Tiffany Thomas Lopez, Aly Raisman and recipients of the Arthur Ashe Award for Courage speak onstage at The 2018 ESPYS at Microsoft Theater on July 18, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
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This was in relation to a fund the university recently revived to pay for the costs of counseling for the victims of Nassar, 55. Last January, Nassar was sentenced to 40-175 years in prison after sexually abusing more than 150 females while serving as a physician for Michigan State and for USA Gymnastics.

He also received a 60-year sentence for possession of child pornography in late 2017.

Engler said during the interview that the fund may not be for all victims, as he apparently believes the 332 claimants awarded a piece of the $425 million settlement don't need the money from the new fund.

"We are really thinking about that 172," Engler told The Detroit News. "The people who got the $425 million are probably OK."

The 172 is the number of claimants under consideration for another $75 million of the settlement set aside for future claimants.

"What's interesting is about half of those who seek help have already been in treatment before they came to the university," Engler added in the interview. "I was blown away by that number. I just hadn't thought about how many people might (have had) crises before coming to the university."

Engler, formerly the governor of Michigan, took over on Jan. 31, 2018, in place of former university president Lou Anna Simon, whose administration was strongly criticized for its response to the Nassar scandal.

14 PHOTOS
Interim Michigan State president John Engler through the years
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Interim Michigan State president John Engler through the years
Michigan Gov. John M. Engler speaks to reporters at a display area in the Society of Automotive Engineers convention at Cobo Center in Detroit on Wednesday, Feb. 28, 1996. Engler laid out plans for an on-line "Auto University" and spoke of the need for a central clearinghouse to collect applications for the thousands of jobs that will be filled each year in the state's auto industry. (AP Photo/Tom Pidgeon)
Michigan Governor John Engler holds up a brochure with the title "Michigan-driving force of the American renaissance" when he opens a trade seminar in Stuttgart on Thursday, Apr.25, 1996. The seminar wants to encourage German automobile supply companies for further investments in Michigan. (AP Photo/Michael Latz)
Michigan Gov. John Engler signs legislation raising the state gasoline tax by 4 cents a gallon, in Lansing, Mich., Friday, July 25, 1997. The increase will take effect Aug. 1. (AP Photo/Dale Atkins)
Michigan Gov. John Engler speaks to supporters at the Republican victory party in Lansing, Mich., in this photo of Tuesday, Nov. 3, 1998, after winning his re-election to a third term. He starts his third and last term with a very focused to-do list: cut the income tax, fix more roads and improve education. (AP Photo/Al Goldis/FILE)
With his arm around Michigan Gov. John Engler, right, Texas Gov. George W. Bush, left, answers reporters questions during a visit to Detroit's Mexican Town, a predominantly Hispanic neighborhood, Thursday, June 24, 1999. (AP Photo/Duane Burleson)
Florida Governor Jeb Bush, center, addresses the media at a news conference as Michigan Governor John Engler, left, and North Dakota Governor Ed Schafer, right, listen on at the Tony Doral Golf Resort and Spa, Friday Oct. 8, 1999 in Miami. Governor Bush addressed the media about the school voucher program. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)
Michigan Gov. John Engler, left, takes the podium to deliver his State of the State speach as Lt. Gov. Dick Posthumus, center, and House Majority Leader Rick Johnson applaud Wednesday, Jan. 31, 2001, in the state Capitol House Chambers in Lansing, Mich. (AP Photo/Al Goldis)
Gov. John Engler tosses a ball prior to throwing out the first pitch of the Detroit Tigers Minnesota Twins game at Comerica Park in Detroit, Tuesday, April 3, 2001. The Twins beat the Tigers 3-2. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)
President Bush and Michigan Gov. John Engler shake hands during a visit with Polish president Aleksander Kwasniewski at Oakland University in Rochester, Mich., Thursday, July 18, 2002. Bush saluted Kwasniewski, as a staunch ally in the war on terrorism as the two toured the heart of Michigan's Polish-American community, a potentially critical cache of votes for Bush. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)
John Engler, president and CEO of the National Association of Manufacturers, gestures during a press conference in Shanghai, China, Friday Nov. 9, 2007. Engler and other members of the U.S. trade delegation said that while China's trade and currency policies are a concern, protectionism will not resolve trade disputes. (AP Photo/Elaine Kurtenbach)
FILE - This June 15, 2009, file photo, shows former Michigan Republican Gov. John Engler at a meeting in Detroit. Engler will resign as interim president of Michigan State University amid public backlash over his comments about women and girls sexually assaulted by now-imprisoned campus sports doctor Larry Nassar, a member of the school's Board of Trustees said Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2019. ( (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio, File)
In a photo from Oct. 13, 2014, former Michigan Gov. John Engler is seen during a Republican rally in Troy, Mich. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)
Michigan State University Interim President John Engler speaks during a Senate Commerce subcommittee hearing on "Strengthening and Empowering U.S. Amateur Athletes," on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, July 24, 2018. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
Interim President John Engler, center, and trustee Joel Ferguson listen to a student during the public comment portion of the Michigan State Board of Trustees meeting Wednesday, January 9, 2019, in East Lansing Mich. Michigan State University's Board of Trustees met for the first time in 2019 with three new members: Nancy Schlicting, Brianna Scott and Kelly Tebay.(Clarence Tabb Jr./Detroit News via AP)
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--Field Level Media

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