Another U of M athletic department executive departs


The man who was second in command of the University of Minnesota's athletic department has stepped down from the position.

According to a report in the Star Tribune, U of M Associate Athletic Director Mike Ellis resigned from his job Friday. The newspaper said it was informed of the decision by Ellis' attorney Chris Madel.

Ellis has been on voluntary leave at the university's request since late August after an investigation into unspecified complaints against him.

In his resignation letter, Ellis said he has received several recent employment opportunities and he feels it is best for his family to "accept one of those and move on."

He was second in command at the athletics department under Norwood Teague. Teague resigned last August after complaints of sexual harassment were made against him.

In his letter on Friday, Ellis said he had done nothing wrong.

"Working at the University has been challenging and rewarding. Recent events relating to the former athletic director, however, have resulted in me being investigated for certain unsubstantiated, anonymous allegations.I am pleased that the University has made no disciplinary findings against me, and that no discipline has been imposed or proposed against me related to any ongoing investigation (This doesn't surprise me, as I have done nothing wrong)."

The University of Minnesota athletics department launched an investigation of the department following the allegations against Teague.

The school hired attorneys Karen Schanfield, a partner at Fredrickson & Byron P.A., and her law partner Joseph Dixon, a former federal prosecutor to run the investigation.

The investigation into allegations against Teague revealed a 2013 complaint against Ellis. According to the Star Tribune, the incident involved "pornographic images" on Ellis' phone that were shown to Teague and others during a bowl game in 2012.

The report notes the complaint closed without Ellis being disciplined from the incident.

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