footballs CHARLOTTE, NC – SEPTEMBER 03: A general view of footballs on the ground prior to kickoff between the East Carolina Pirates and South Carolina Gamecocks during their game at Bank of America Stadium on September 3, 2011 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

On Friday morning, Northwestern concluded its investigation into allegations of hazing within the Northwestern Wildcats football program, finding that there was indeed evidence of hazing within the program. As a result, the university suspended head coach Pat Fitzgerald for two weeks without pay, and now he’s speaking on the findings.

Following the news of the suspension, Pat Fitzgerald made it clear that while he was not aware of the incidents before the investigation, he was “very disappointed.”

“I was very disappointed when I heard about the allegations of hazing on our football team,” Fitzgerald said. “Although I was not aware of the alleged incidents, I have spoken to the University officials, and they have informed me of a two-week suspension, effective immediately.

“Northwestern football prides itself on producing not just athletes, but fine young men with character befitting the program and our University. We hold our student-athletes and our program to the highest standards; we will continue to work to exceed those standards moving forward.”

The investigation did not find specific evidence that indicated Fitzgerald or any other coaches explicitly knew about the hazing incidents, but found that Fitzgerald had “significant opportunities” to uncover the hazing incidents.

“The investigation team did not discover sufficient evidence to believe that coaching staff knew about the ongoing hazing conduct. They determined, however, that there had been significant opportunities to discover and report the hazing conduct,” the document said.

[Kyle Rittenberg]