Appeals hearing underway for 10 suspended Gophers players

The 10 suspended Gophers football players arrived for their discipline appeals hearing Thursday afternoon with parents and attorneys by their side.

Five of those men are facing expulsion from the university.

Antonio Shenault is looking at a yearlong probation for reportedly lying about his whereabouts the night of the alleged sexual assault.

“Am I worried about the process? Absolutely. Definitely worried,” said Kenneth Shenault, Antonio’s father, to Fox 9 on Wednesday. “But I trust in the attorneys here. The people on the panel. They have to realize they have the wrong kid. This kid has never been in trouble a day in his life.”

While cameras are barred from inside the hearing conference room, Ryan Pacyga, the attorney for Antoine Winfield Jr., reported that the alleged victim testified and was cross-examined for several hours.

Pacyga is worried that the panel isn’t getting the whole story. He says a to a 90-second video from one player’s cell phone, which apparently shows a consensual encounter, won’t be allowed in as evidence.

“There’s a situation where you have an accuser, having very detailed accounts of what she wanted to remember and then very sketchy memories on things in a bad light,” said Pacyga. “We’re here in a middle of the battle.”

On Friday, the players will get to tell their side of the story directly to a student sexual misconduct subcommittee panel comprised of three members.

A simple majority is needed to find that an accused student violated the school’s conduct code.

If that happens, then the group will vote on discipline before informing the parties in writing within a week.