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Michigan State's Nix sees drug charge dropped after court hearing

Almost as quickly as he got into trouble, Michigan State basketball star Derrick Nix is on his way back to being in his coach's good graces again. Nix, who was arrested on drug charges early this month and suspended from the team, pleaded guilty in a court in East Lansing, Michigan, to a charge of operating a motor vehicle while impaired; the marijuana possession charge that had been filed was dismissed.

Nix apologized at an emotional news conference alongside his coach, Tom Izzo. As we wrote about earlier on this blog, Izzo had suspended Nix indefinitely after the arrest. While Nix is back in the program, Izzo said he is going to "make life miserable" for the senior-to-be to make sure he doesn't get into trouble again.

The way Izzo talked about it, Nix's punishment on the basketball court -- or rather, off of it -- will be more severe than any legal consequences. With the marijuana charge no longer hanging over Nix's head, he will only face the music on the impairment charge. He is scheduled to be sentenced May 11.

Fortunately for Nix, he has a strong support system to help him navigate his next moves. Several former teammates joined coaches, administrators and current players at the news conference to offer support to Nix. Izzo said that the ex-players -- including veterans of the program who hadn't suited up for the Spartans in decades -- were making sure that Nix would be adequately supported by the extended MSU family.

Source: The Detroit News, "MSU's Derrick Nix apologizes, reinstated to team after guilty plea," Matt Charboneau, April 12, 2012

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