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Minnesota Players Are Bashing Tracy Claeys' Firing In Statements To ESPN

Minnesota's football players taking the field.

Some Minnesota players are not happy about the firing of Tracy Claeys.

Following the announcement of the firing of Tracy Claeys, multiple Minnesota players are trashing the administration. Claeys was fired early Tuesday morning, and the response from his former players is strong.

Quarterback Mitch Leidner had this to say in a statement to

Minnesota QB Mitch Leidner: “This is terrible decision by the administration. This is a pretty sad day for Gopher football."

— Brett McMurphy (@McMurphyESPN) January 3, 2017

">ESPN's Brett McMurphy:

Leidner continued, saying he doesn't know who would want to be a part of the Minnesota organization.

Apparently, other Minnesota Gophers' players share Leidner's sentiments. In a separate statement to McMurphy, an undisclosed number of Minnesota underclassmen ripped the administration and had the following to say:

Minnesota's athletic director said in a statement that he made the change to address "challenges in recruiting, ticket sales and the culture of the program."

Perhaps more importantly, he addressed the 10 Golden Gopher players getting suspended for the bowl game, and Claeys' support of a player boycott.

I informed Coach Claeys of my judgment that athletic suspensions were appropriate.

Without any objection, Coach Claeys said he understood that decision to bench student-athletes.

Coach Claeys, Deputy Athletics Director John Cunningham, and I met with the student-athletes to advise them of our decision. Coach Claeys subsequently informed me that he agreed with the suspension decision.

And let me be clear: this was the right thing to do.

Coach Claeys’ Tweet later that week was not helpful. I accept that Coach Claeys intended it to support the boycotting players. Understandably others did not see it that way. I hope you will appreciate I cannot say more about the athletic suspensions in this case.

You can read his full statement here.