MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Hundreds of students, alumni and community members are expected to attend a rally Wednesday calling for University of Minnesota officials to fire Gopher football coach Tracy Claeys.
The call for Claeys’ termination comes after he tweeted last month his support when the Gopher football team threatened to boycott practice and potentially a bowl game following the suspension of 10 players accused in a sexual assault case. An online petition calling for the coach to be fired, which gained thousands of signatures, was handed last week to university officials.
This week, Claeys is slated to meet with Gopher athletics director Mark Coyle to discuss his future with the university. The rally Wednesday afternoon, which is being organized by some of the same people behind the petition, is seeking to influence university officials in their decision.
“We need a football coach who represents the values of the university,” a release announcing the rally said. “Claeys’ words and actions in the wake of his players’ disgusting choices are reprehensible, and we call President [Eric] Kaler to end Claeys’ contract immediately.”
Speakers at the rally will include State Reps. Ilhan Omar, Dave Pinto, Erin Murphy, and Melissa Hortman, the news release says.
The rally will be held from noon to 1 p.m. at Morrill Hall on the University of Minnesota campus. More than 500 people may attend, the news release says.