Gopher Legend Not Worried About Fundraising While Investigation Continues

May 19, 2017 11:23 AM

Minnesota Gopher hockey legend Lou Nanne said Friday night he is not worried about donations coming into the University of Minnesota, even as the school deals with the most recent sexual harassment investigation involving an athletics department official.

Randy Handel, the associate athletic director of development, was investigated by the University of Minnesota's Office of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action and was found to have sexually harassed an employee in the athletic department, according to an email sent to the Board of Regents earlier this week.

RELATED: University Report: Top U of M Fundraiser Sexually Harassed Woman, Handel Denies 'Any Sexual Intent'

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"No I'm not worried about fundraising at all," Nanne, Gopher alumni, said.

The University's $190 million Nothing Short of Greatness campaign for the athletic department has raised $102 million, including more than $90 million for the Athletes Village project. Nanne is part of that fundraising campaign and knows Handel well.

RELATED: New Bill Would Require U of M to Report Sexual Harassment

"This guy (Handel) is the most popular guy, the most warm, loving, compassionate, caring human being," Nanne said. "This is the most absurd thing I've seen in my life, and the damage done to individuals in this day in age when things of this sort come up, when people go forward before there is any real issue, is beyond comprehension."

An employee in the athletics department filed the complaint with the University. Details of the allegations are not yet known.

Handel has not returned requests for comment. He remains as on paid leave as of Friday.

REPORT: U of M Athletics Official Violated Sexual Harassment Policy 

The employee who filed the complaint hasn't spoken to KSTP either.

"This (Nothing Short of Greatness) campaign is a reflection of the commitment our donors have to Gopher student-athletes, not any one individual," said Evan Lapiska, University spokesman.  

When the University broke ground on the project back in October 2015, it had raised around $80 million.
 

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Ben Rodgers

Copyright 2017 - KSTP-TV, LLC A Hubbard Broadcasting Company

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