Raiola apologizes, makes "significant" monetary contribution to the Wisconsin Marching Band

Posted Oct 8, 2013

Center Dominic Raiola apologizes for remarks made to members of the Wisconsin marching band prior to Sunday's game at Green Bay and makes donation to the Marching Band Fund.

Detroit Lions center Dominic Raiola has personally apologized to University of Wisconsin Band Director Michael Leckrone for inappropriate remarks he made to members of the band before Sunday’s game in Green Bay.

Raiola had a phone conversation with Leckrone on Tuesday and also indicated that he was making a significant donation to The Marching Band Fund, which supports Wisconsin’s Marching Band.

"My interaction with the Wisconsin Marching Band was inappropriate," Raiola said in a statement released by the team. "I apologize to those I offended along with all of the members of Wisconsin’s Marching Band.

"I also apologize to the Lions’ organization and my teammates. I understand the standards to which we should conduct ourselves, and my actions Sunday fell dramatically short of those standards."

Team President Tom Lewand, who personally apologized to Leckrone on Monday, issued this statement:

"After investigating the matter and discussing Sunday’s events with Dominic, we are pleased that he has taken ownership of his actions and admitted those actions were wrong and unacceptable," the statement read.

"As we said yesterday, his actions were not reflective of the standard of behavior that we expect from any player or any member of our organization.

"We are also pleased that he is supporting his apology with a significant donation to the Wisconsin Marching Band Fund.

"Due to Dominic’s sincere and appropriate response, there will be no additional disciplinary action by the team."

Head coach Jim Schwartz was asked about the incident during his weekly press conference with the media and conveyed a similar sentiment.

"I didn’t hear that personally on the field," Schwartz said. "No other coaches did. I think we’ve already released a statement that we’re going to look into it as an organization. I’d be very disappointed if that was the case because that’s certainly not the character that we want to display."

Raiola was fined $7,500 in 2008 for inappropriate conduct directed toward fans during a loss at home to Minnesota. In 2010, he was fined $15,000 for responding to a fan in Miami with obscene words and a hand gesture.

The Lions are hoping this closes the matter and Raiola's focus turns to Cleveland and helping the Lions get to 4-2 on the season.