The Free Press, Mankato, MN

Local News

May 8, 2013

UPDATE: Hoffner fired from MSU

MANKATO — Minnesota State University former head football coach Todd Hoffner was fired Monday.

Connie Howard, general counsel for the Inter Faculty Organization representing Hoffner, released a statement Wednesday confirming Hoffner¹s termination. MSU would only confirm Hoffner was taken off the payroll Tuesday.

"As with the January 2013 suspension and reassignment of Coach Hoffner, the Inter Faculty Organization (IFO) immediately grieved the termination," the statement from Howard said. "The termination has now been consolidated with the January grievance such that both will be heard by a single arbitrator this summer. We expect Coach Hoffner to prevail."

Hoffner referred all questions to Howard.

MSU spokesman Dan Benson said the Minnesota Data Practices Act prohibits him from giving any further details until the appeals process is complete.

He did say two complaints had been filed against Hoffner and were investigated by the university. The investigations have been completed, but Benson again said Data Practices law prohibited him from saying anything about the results of those investigations.

Hoffner was escorted off a practice field in August and put on paid administrative leave after an employee at the university found short videos of his young children dancing without clothing on a university-issued

cellphone. He was later arrested and charged with possession of child pornography, but the charges were dismissed by Blue Earth County District Court Judge Krista Jass.

Jass found there was no probable cause for the charges and the videos were protected by the First Amendment.

Instead of allowing Hoffner, 46, to return to his job as head coach, the university assigned Hoffner to an administrative position within the athletic department. The university has not said whether Hoffner ever faced

disciplinary action.

Hoffner also asked Jass to seal all of the information in the criminal file, including correspondence between university officials and Blue Earth County sheriff''s investigators. Jass issued an order Friday that sealed the file.

 

 

 

Free Press Staff Writer Amanda Dyslin contributed to this story.

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