Coyle Details Athletic Department Culture Shift for Board of Regents

February 10, 2017 05:27 PM

One week after 10 Gopher football players learned their academic fate after a sexual misconduct investigation, Athletic Director Mark Coyle told the university's Board of Regents what the school is doing to address student-athlete development.

"I think it's important as we move forward in the spring semester and the summer that we clearly define our core values, and what I mean by that is we have to define the values that we are going to drive our behavior day in and day out," Coyle said to the Board of Regents.

Coyle said that since September 2015, the football team has had eight educational sessions specifically related to topics covered by the student code of conduct. He added that a new approach aimed at improving the training will include smaller sessions in which there's more give-and-take between players and the people teaching the classes.

"Some of the values that we've started to talk about in our department are academic excellence, competitive excellence, character, selflessness, authentic communication, genuine care and concern for others," Coyle said.


Coyle also said there will be changes to on-campus recruiting practices as well as student-athlete housing. Specifically, freshman student athletes will be required to live in the dorms.

"We expect top-flight behavior from our students and from our student athletes and we're gonna help them get there," said University of Minnesota President Eric Kaler, who called Coyle a great hire.

"My New Year's resolution is the Department of Athletics, University of Minnesota, does not appear on the front page or on a TV screen for 12 months unless we win a championship, okay? And we're working toward that endeavor," Board of Regents Chairman Dean Johnson said.

Coyle also told regents that the athletics department will further enhance its relationship with The Aurora Center, which provides crisis intervention to victims of sexual assault, relationship violence, stalking and harassment.


Josh Rosenthal

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