Gopher fans and non-fans alike were largely caught by surprise Friday morning when University of Minnesota Athletic Director Norwood Teague announced he was resigning from the post.
Teague acknowledged Friday that he sent inappropriate text messages to university employees. Later Friday, the school released documents showing many of those text messages were lewd and sexually explicit.
Reaction to the news has varied, but Gopher football coach Jerry Kill told the Pioneer Press he feels badly for everyone involved.
"I don't judge people because I haven't walked in those shoes," Kill told the newspaper. "I feel bad for everybody that is in the situation."
Teague had been working to help raise money for a new practice facility at the university – a project that's become known as "Athletics Village." Last week he said construction of the project would begin in September or October.
Now the university will be focusing on a national search to replace Teague.
Not everyone was emphatic about the situation as coach Kill. KFAN's Dan Barrerio says Teague "flat out blew it."
"He acted like some sort of creepy college sophomore. Actually, he acted far worse. Because at the age of 49, he's supposed to know better. In a leadership position at a state university, he's supposed to be better. To be a chief brain wizard at a major state university and inspire in alleged victims a fear to walk home by themselves? Inexcusable. It was a slam dunk that he had to go."
While the Pioneer Press' Jordan Shipley says Teague's actions brings the university down with him, and he called the university a national punchline.
"Teague was the top official of Gopher athletics. Secondly, tales of what he apparently characterized as 'a bad night' have started a national standup routine that is doing for the U what Walt Palmer's African safari did for dentistry."
Deadspin published details of the harassment claims against Teague. According to the complaint, the incidents took place at a university function. In a statement, Teague admitted to having too much to drink and sending the inappropriate messages.
He apologized to the alleged victims and plans to get treatment for his alcohol issues.
Still University of Minnesota president Eric Kaler insists Teague's indiscretions have not tarnished the image of Gopher sports.
"This is the action of a person who made a bad decision," Kaler said. "It's not the actions of Gopher athletics."