Lansing — Three former Michigan State University football players charged with sexually assaulting an MSU student in January 2017 did not appear in court Wednesday after their attorneys attended a closed session with Ingham County Circuit Court judge Rosemary Aquilina.

A prosecutor said they would continue to move toward a trial. The three are scheduled to make their next court appearance April 4.

The players were dismissed from MSU's football team in June 2017 by Coach Mark Dantonio. They were dismissed from the university after the completion of a Title IX investigation into the incident later that year.

Josh King, 19, has been charged with first-degree criminal sexual conduct, which carries a maximum sentence of life in prison. Donnie Corley, 19, and Demetric Vance, 20, are charged with third-degree criminal sexual assault, and if convicted could face up to 15 years behind bars.

Curtis Blackwell, a member of the team's coaching staff, was fired from the university after a police investigation determined he had interfered with their probe. Ingham County Prosecutor Carol Simeon declined to file charges against Blackwell.

The players, out on bond, have signed to play football this fall at Coahoma Community College in Mississippi.

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