Call Today for a FREE Confidential Case Review
Toll-Free 24/7 (866) 920-0753

University of Michigan Sex Abuse Lawsuit

University of Michigan Sex Abuse Lawsuit

Dozens of male and female students and former athletes say they were sexually abused at the University of Michigan by Dr. Robert E. Anderson, a physician who worked at the school from 1968 to 2003.

What You Can Do & How We Can Help

The Schmidt Firm, PLLC is currently accepting sexual abuse induced injury cases in all 50 states. If you or somebody you know was molested, assaulted, raped, or sexually abused by Dr. Robert E. Anderson at the University of Michigan, you should contact our lawyers immediately for a free case consultation. Please use the form below to contact our Sexual Abuse Litigation Group or call toll free 24 hours a day at (866) 920-0753.

UPDATE: Sex Abuse Lawsuit Filed by 53 Former U-M Students

In July 2020, a sexual abuse lawsuit was filed by 53 former students at U-M who say they were assaulted by Dr. Anderson during medical exams, including dozens of former football players. One female has also filed a lawsuit.

Dr. Anderson is accused of anal penetration and testicular exams during routine physicals and medical exams, while officials at U-M ignored decades of complaints and turned a blind eye to the abuse.

Did Bo Schembechler Know?

Student Reported Sex Abuse to Bo Schembechler in 1980s

One of the football players who joined the lawsuit against U-M said he was anally penetrated by Dr. Anderson during an exam for a migraine in the 1980s, and reported the incident to legendary football coach Bo Schembechler.

The student said Schembechler grew “visibly angry” and told him to tell then-athletic director Don Canham. The student told Canham, but unfortunately, he said Canham’s “response, literally, was just to blow me off. He did nothing.”

1st Lawsuits Filed by Sex Abuse Victims of Dr. Anderson

The first sex abuse lawsuit was filed by an anonymous man who was a former wrestler at the University of Michigan. He said he was abused by Dr. Anderson between the ages of 17 and 22 years old, and that Dr. Anderson “continued to molest and grope him on a regular basis,” for a total of 70 acts of non-consensual anal penetration and genital fondling, between 1984 and 1989.

What is the problem?

Dr. Robert E. Anderson, a now-deceased doctor who worked at the University of Michigan from 1968 to 2003, is accused of molesting and sexually abusing male and female students and athletes during physical exams.

UM ‘Fired’ Dr. Anderson in 1979 — But He Continued Molesting Athletes for Decades

Perhaps most troubling, Dr. Anderson was fired from his job as the top doctor at the UM student health services in 1979 because he was “fooling around with male students” during exams, according to police.

But instead of leaving UM or going to jail, Dr. Anderson took a pay cut and became the top physician in the athletic department in 1980, where he continued treating student athletes for 24 more years. When he retired in 2003, he was the top physician for the UM football team.

Athletes Called Him Dr. “Drop-Your-Drawers” Anderson

The sexual abuse was well-known in the athletic department — particularly football and wrestling — where students nicknamed him Dr. “Drop-Your-Drawers” Anderson for his pattern of forcing athletes to strip naked and undergo genital exams for unrelated health problems.

Sex Abuse During Yearly Physical Exams for Athletes

Bill Johannesen, the wrestling coach at UM from 1974 to 1978, told police that all of his wrestlers had to see Dr. Anderson for their yearly physical. He said they called him Dr. “Drop-Your-Drawers” because they would go to see him for a “hurt elbow” and the first thing they’d be told to do was “take your pants down,” according to police reports.

Unnecessary Genital Exams During Routine Physicals for Wrestlers, Football Players

UM opened a criminal investigation into the complaints against Dr. Anderson in 2018. That year, police interviewed multiple athletes from the 1970s who said they were were fondled, molested, or given unnecessary rectal or prostate exams during routine physicals.

Over 100+ Unique Complaints of Sex Abuse Against Dr. Anderson

At least 100 unique complaints against Dr. Anderson have been reported to a hotline as of March 2020. UM’s president apologized to “anyone who has been harmed” and is urging victims to come forward if they believe they were sexually abused during a medical exam.

Sex Abuse Accusations Are Very Similar to Dr. Richard Strauss at Ohio State University

The accusations are eerily similar to a scandal at Ohio State University, where at least 177 student athletes reported that were sexually abused by Dr. Richard H. Strauss since the 1970s. Dr. Strauss is accused of groping students during physicals, forcing students to strip naked, showering with students, and more. The university is also accused of ignoring complaints and allowing the abuse to continue for decades.

Do I have a Sexual Abuse Lawsuit?

The Schmidt Firm, PLLC is currently accepting sexual abuse induced injury cases in all 50 states. If you or somebody you know was molested, assaulted, raped, or sexually abused by Dr. Robert E. Anderson at the University of Michigan, you should contact our lawyers immediately for a free case consultation. Please use the form below to contact our Sexual Abuse Litigation Group or call toll free 24 hours a day at (866) 920-0753.

Attention Lawyers: We consider a referral from another law firm to be one of the greatest compliments. If your firm is interested in referring us a case or for us to send you a list of previous award judgments and/or average referral fees, please visit the Lawyer Referral section of our website.

Free Case Evaluation


The Schmidt Firm, PLLC has been recognized as one of the nation’s leading plaintiffs' law firms and handles cases in all 50 states. We are very proud of our legal achievements, but equally self-respecting of our firm's reputation for providing personal attention to each and every client we represent.

No matter what type of case you have, you may contact us with confidence by filling out the email contact form below or calling us directly by dialing toll free 24 hrs/day (866) 920-0753.