Nine former and current Minnesota football players are suing the university for $45 million, citing racial and gender discrimination during the 2016 sexual misconduct investigation that left 10 players suspended.
According to Maura Lerner of the Star Tribune, the players allege that the university is guilty of racial and gender discrimination and that it "willfully and maliciously" turned the players into scapegoats. Teague resigned in 2015 after two high-ranking administrators said he sexually harassed them at a senior leadership retreat.
According to a statement from University, the school will defend the results of the 2016 investigation and the process used.
The university says it will vigorously defend its handling of the case: "The University thoughtfully and thoroughly responds when faced with disturbing allegations, and provides extensive process to students accused of misconduct, including the opportunity to be heard during thorough investigations, panel hearings, and Provost review".
"The only distinguishing feature between Plaintiffs and the accused Athletics Department officials and coaches whom the University and Kaler had treated with sympathy and compassion was the color of their skin" the lawsuit states.
The lawsuit also maintains that EOAA investigators, among other things, deprived plaintiffs of their constitutional rights, ignored significant inconsistencies in Jane Doe's story, failed to advise certain plaintiffs that they had been accused of sexual misconduct, ignored evidence and failed to interview critical witnesses. Given that the lawsuit protects the name of the woman, Madgett said, the names of the men should be protected, too.
The player's version of events, which largely differs from the timeline given to investigators by the woman, asserts that she engaged in consensual sex with five members of the football team and a potential football recruit.
The players are seeking unspecified damages as part of the lawsuit. Four of the plaintiffs also seek reinstatement as students in good standing. 10 players were initially involved in the original sexual assault incident that led to various suspensions and expulsions from the program but the report does not say which of the group is not participating in the lawsuit.
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