Tracy Claeys says there's a 'great chance' he loses his job

Claeys also pledged to donate $50,000 to assist victims of sexual assault.

Gophers head coach Tracy Claeys has said there's a "great chance" he loses his job over his support of a controversial players boycott this week.

Players had threatened to boycott the Holiday Bowl on Dec. 27 in protest at the University of Minnesota's decision to suspend 10 players over an alleged sexual assault that happened in September.

The players dropped their planned boycott after becoming aware of the contents of an 80-page report that described the assault.

Speaking to WCCO-AM on Sunday, Claeys said it was "pretty" easy to support his players' calls for due process, but his stance has set him against university leaders.

"There is a great chance I could lose my job over this because... you’re split between being a university employee and at the same time — whether people believe it or not — when you’re a coach, you’re a parent of kids also," he said, adding that he knew it was a possibility that his support could put his job at risk.

He also told the radio station he'll be donating money out of his own pocket to victims of sexual assault.

U President Eric Kaler told the Pioneer Press on Saturday that coaches are "in a challenging position" where they need to support their players, but also have to be responsible for their actions.

"I think some of our coaches around this issue were in that very difficult position and we’ll talk about that with them and try to improve both their understanding and our understanding," he said.

When renouncing the boycott on Saturday, the Gophers players lowered their demands to ask that all 10 players get a fair hearing with a “diverse” review panel.

They also asked for "a showing of support for our team and the character shown by the great majority of our players."

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