Chris Dang / Minnesota Daily
Ten Gophers football players were suspended indefinitely from all team activities by the University because of their involvement in an alleged Sept. 2 sexual assault.
A timeline of the events that led to the decision and its aftermath:
Thursday, Sept. 1: Gophers win home-opening game of season against Oregon State.Friday, Sept. 2: Alleged sexual assault occurs night of game, after midnight.Saturday, Sept. 3: Victim reports to police she was sexually assaulted.Saturday, Sept. 10: Gophers football head coach Tracy Claeys suspends KiAnte Hardin, Ray Buford, Tamarion Johnson, and Dior Johnson before second game of season against Indiana State at home. Claeys said they violated team rules and are suspended indefinitely. No arrests made.Monday, Sept. 12: News breaks that the four players – Hardin, Buford, Tamarion Johnson and Dior Johnson — are being investigated by the Minneapolis Police Department for possible connection with a criminal sexual assault case. It is unspecified whether they are witnesses or suspects.Monday, Oct. 3: Hennepin County Attorney’s Office announces no charges will be filed against the players.Tuesday, Oct. 4: Claeys lifts players’ suspensions.Wednesday, Oct. 19: Carlton Djam, a player who wasn’t originally suspended, and Tamarion Johnson are served with restraining orders from alleged Sept. 2 victim, preventing them from playing in home games at TCF Bank Stadium.Friday, Oct. 21: Hardin, Buford, and Dior Johnson are served with restraining orders from alleged Sept. 2 victim, preventing them from playing in home games.Saturday, Oct. 22: A sixth player, Kiondre Thomas, gets served a restraining order from alleged Sept. 2 victim. The six players don’t play against Rutgers at TCF Bank Stadium.Monday, Oct. 24: Victim lifts restraining order on Kiondre Thomas.Tuesday, Oct. 25: All six players appear in court, even though only five still have restraining orders. Their attorney, Lee Hutton, attempts to get orders removed without hearing evidence. Judge Mel Dickstein rules he won’t hear the case until Thursday, Nov. 3, and said he plans on making decision before Nov. 5 home game against Purdue. The hearing date is changed to Nov. 2.Wednesday, Nov. 2: Restraining orders on five players dismissed after settlement reached between alleged victim and football players. The five players are ordered to stay at least 20 feet away from the woman.Saturday, Nov. 5: Players return for game against Purdue at TCF Bank Stadium.Saturday, Nov. 26: Minnesota ends its regular with a 31-17 loss to Wisconsin.Sunday, Dec. 4: Gophers are selected to play Washington State in Holiday Bowl on Dec. 27 in San Diego.Tuesday, Dec. 13: The University announces indefinite suspension of 10 players: Buford, Djam, Seth Green, Hardin, Dior Johnson, Tamarion Johnson, Kobe McCrary, Antonio Shenault, Mark Williams and Antoine Winfield Jr.Wednesday, Dec. 14: Athletics director Mark Coyle, defensive coordinator Jay Sawvel and offensive coordinator Jay Johnson speak at the Gibson-Nagurski Football Complex about the suspensions.Thursday, Dec. 15: The team announces it will boycott all football activities, including the Dec. 27 Holiday bowl, until the 10 player suspensions are lifted by Coyle.Friday, Dec. 16: Multiple outlets report players meet with University regents. Kaler issues statement saying, “Every member of the University community deserves to be treated with respect,” and “The University of Minnesota will not change our values or our code of conduct for the sake of a bowl game.” Coyle and Kaler pen open letter to student athletes. Coyle and Kaler later met with a group of football players Friday night, but no update on the boycott was provided as confirmed by a University spokesman.Saturday, Dec. 17: Sources say football team will update their status on the boycott at a 9 a.m. news conference. At the press conference, Wolitarsky, standing with seven other players, reads from statement announcing the end to the football team’s boycott and their intent to play in the Holiday Bowl. Claeys and a few other coaches watch from a distance as the team calls on the University to grant the 10 suspended players a “fair hearing,” and promise increased efforts as public figures to tackle sexual assault and violence. Kaler and Coyle speak to media shortly after. Gophers football players take to Twitter with a new hashtag, #NLMB (Never Leave My Brothers).Sunday, Dec. 18: Claeys speaks in front of reporters for first time since the start, end of boycott.Tuesday, Dec. 27: Gophers defeat Washington State in Holiday Bowl 17-12. Claeys doesn’t address status of his contract after the game.Tuesday, Jan. 3: Claeys fired as head coach of the Gophers football program. No update provided on his assistant coaches and replacement.
The Minnesota Daily will update this timeline as news develops.