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Gophers to Play in Holiday Bowl Amid Investigation into Sexual Misconduct Accusations

December 27, 2016 07:54 AM

The Minnesota Gophers football team is preparing to take on Washington State during the Holiday Bowl on Tuesday in San Diego.

It's the first time in more than 50 years that the Gophers are in California for a bowl game.

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However, with the team making headlines recently for allegations of sexual misconduct, the future of 10 players and Head Coach Tracy Claeys have been called into question.

The sexual misconduct allegations involve football players and a female student at a Dinkytown apartment on Sept. 2. Criminal charges were not pursued after police investigated.

READ ALSO: 80-Page Report Outlines U of M Investigation into Gophers Football Players

An online petition, signed by more than 1,100 people, is calling for the firing of Claeys for "failure of leadership and lack of sound judgment."

Many announced they were upset Claeys supported his team when they announced they would boycott the game over the suspensions of the 10 players amid an investigation into the alleged sexual assault.

While there's a chance the Holiday Bowl could be Claeys' last game, he says he's received a lot of support from his peers in the coaching profession in the past week or so.

"When you have 100 kids that are 17 to 20 years old, you go through some sleepless nights, that's for sure," Claeys said.

Last week, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman announced he will review a report prepared by the University of Minnesota, detailing what the university's Office of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action investigation concluded after looking into the allegations of sexual misconduct.

RELATED: Hennepin County Attorney's Office Reviewing EOAA Report on Gophers Football Players

The Holiday Bowl kicks off at 6 p.m. Central Time.

KSTP

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