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The Gophers football team announced Thursday it would boycott all athletic activities and the Dec. 27 Holiday Bowl, if needed, to protest the university's decision to suspend 10 players as a result of a September sexual assault allegation.

Gophers coach Tracy Claeys showed support for his players by tweeting “Have never been more proud of our kids. I respect their rights & support their effort to make a better world!”

Many supporters of the program shared the same sentiment across social media, while others spoke out against the team's decision to demand the players be reinstated.

The reaction from coaches:

Head coach Tracy Claeys


Assistant/linebackers coach Mike Sherels

Defensive coordinator Jay Sawvel

I have always been proud of our players at Minnesota - and forever will be !!!!

— Jay Sawvel (@JaySawvel) December 16, 2016


The reaction from Star Tribune readers on Facebook:

Kenny Jones: "I don't think I've ever been more proud of a football team."

Ryan Van Haaften: "The players have demonstrated they don't comprehend the student code of conduct may hold them to a higher level of accountability than the law. Which is odd because football done right is all about accountability. Coach is an Xs and Os guy and Kill set the culture, which from all accounts was pretty good. Claeys wasn't/isn't in the business of molding young men."

Mark Mischke: "The Holiday Bowl committee will rescind their offer and we can say goodbye to any future bowl hopes in the near future."

Robert Wold: "Good. I'm glad due process is making a come back."

John Jirik: "Playing football is a privilege not a right! Cancel all scholarships and give them to kids that want an education."

Darcy Anderson: "We all have choices and consequences that come with those choices. We don't know all the details of what prompted the suspensions, but the university obviously uncovered conduct it does not expect from its student athletes. If the team wants to go "all in" and refuse to participate in football activities, they should have taken off the jerseys they were wearing and left them on the floor of the multi million dollar facility they held the press conference in. I'm sure there are several other football teams that could adjust their schedule at the last minute for a bowl game. The boys could then go home and spend the holidays with their families. Choices and consequences."

Response on Twitter:


Finally, making a statement through support for the Gophers volleyball team: