The football players at Minnesota State University Mankato may soon end their holdout over the return of head coach Todd Hoffner. Hoffner took his job back at the school, nearly two years after he was suspended and then fired for taking bath time pictures of his children. Last week, an arbitrator ruled the firing was improper.
Yesterday, the players read this statement, then took no questions:
As a collective unit, we’ve all agreed that we will stick together and show our support in having Aaron Keen as the head football coach at Minnesota State University, Mankato.
We’ve all become outstanding community members, students, and athletes, in the last year and a half since the removal of Todd Hoffner.
Throughout this process, our voice has been silent, it is time our voice is heard.
We want information, we want answers, because this is our team.
As a unit we have decided not to practice, because of the change-up in the coaching situation.
We want Aaron Keen as the head coach.
You don’t need a college degree to figure out the statement. But today, the team members shifted the blame for their walkout to the people for whom they refused to answer any questions after reading that statement.
MSU player says yesterday's events were taken out of context. They meant no disrespect to Coach Hoffner.
— KEYC News 12 (@keyc) April 17, 2014
Let’s back up here, kids. You refused to practice, you said you wouldn’t practice because Hoffner was back in charge, you said you wanted Aaron Keen as the head coach and then you didn’t think that anything beyond that needed explanation so you didn’t take any questions. And you did all this, not in the privacy of a locker room, but on the field with the TV cameras, where you could sandbag an unsuspecting coach.
Oh, and there’s this. Check out the KEYC video of the young men reading their statement (available on the Star Tribune website). Hoffner was standing in front of the players. They never looked at him.
Meanwhile, the coaches and the athletic director met today to decide what’s next. They’ll hold a news conference this afternoon. The player who acted as the spokesman for the group will also speak, according to Fox9 News.